Ethnic kinship


Quantification and Increase through Political Evolution

Frank Salter

[Original details:]

Max Planck Society, Human Ethology,

Von-der-Tann-Str. 3,

82346 Andechs, Germany

Notes for a report presented at the 16th biennial meeting of the International Society for Human Ethology, 7-10 August 2002, Montreal


Biological theories of the origin of heroism in warfare and other types of altruism directed towards the tribe or ethnic group have often attributed this to some adaptive function, such as retention of group resources. However, without an estimate of the aggregate kinship at stake within the group, no theory of altruism can be tested using W. D. Hamilton’s rule for adaptive altruism. By “adaptive”, Hamilton meant evolutionarily stable, such that the altruist’s genes are not selected out of the gene pool. Though Hamilton’s 1975 model showed that ethnic kinship could theoretically be large, no evolutionary theory has yet answered the most basic question, whether in fact ethnic kinship—the genetic similarity of co-ethnics who are not genealogical kin—is ever large enough to make ethnic altruism adaptive.

Harpending (2002) derived a population-genetic formula for estimating the aggregate ethnic kinship held by one population in relation to another based on the genetic distance between the two populations. The genetic assay data needed to make this estimate for modern ethnic groups are becoming available. The data used in this present study are provided by Cavalli-Sforza et al. (1994). Based on those data, aggregate ethnic kinship is much larger than aggregate family kinship. Data on tribal genetic distance are uncertain. But existing evidence indicates that tribal genetic interests vis a vis neighbouring tribes in the Neolithic were already larger than familial kinship. The direction of theory and data strongly indicate that self sacrificial altruism in warfare could have been adaptive from that time.

The Hamilton-Harpending algorithm offers an analytical tool for estimating whether a population was (or is) a fit object for altruism, and thus whether that altruism was (or is) sustainable across evolutionary time.


Hamilton’s Fst statement referred to genes coding for altruism, not to the whole genome. However, my point regarding kinship remains valid because I used Fst data based on sampling of the genome, not on altruistic genes.

Also please note that the more accurate data provided by the Human Genome Data Base show somewhat lower racial variation and therefore lower racial kinship. Instead of 9%, the French-Japanese variation is 6% (Salter and Harpending 2013). Because the reduction is not great it does not invalidate the analysis.

Salter, F. K., & Harpending, H. (2013). J. P. Rushton’s theory of ethnic nepotism. Personality and Individual Differences, 55, 256-260. doi:10.1016/j.paid.2012.11.014

I also should correct one part of my summary of David Goetze’s insight concerning collective goods, such as big-game hunting and collective defence. From about the 3 minute mark I say that these cooperative activities allow large investments to be made in large populations. Actually, they also allow small investments to make a difference.


The key issue in the evolutionary theory of ethnic conflict is whether solidarity towards fellow ethnics has been adaptive. Components of this problem are:

(1) Was the kinship between random members of bands and tribes large enough for altruism directed towards fellow ethnics to have been adaptive?

(2) If the answer to (1) is yes, then what mechanisms were necessary? Answering this question will help locate the stage in political evolution at which ethnic altruism could have become adaptive, thus allowing genes or culture that code for ethnic altruism to spread through the population.

We already know the answer, or much of the answer, to the second question. Proponents of group selection have argued, convincingly I think, that members of bands and tribes can behave altruistically without being selected out by free riders. Eibl-Eibesfeldt (1982) argued from his field observations that mutual monitoring, ubiquitous in small-scale societies, is sufficient to suppress cheating. He pointed to the pronounced group identity and mutual support found in primitive societies, and argued that this originated in kinship bonds. The cohesion of band and tribal societies makes them units of selection, Eibl argued. This point was elaborated by Boyd and Richerson (1992), who argue that monitoring and punishment are so effective in small scale societies that they allow the evolution of cooperation, or any other characteristic that is promoted by a culturally-governed group strategy.

Whether or not one accept that group selection has figured in human evolution, the mechanisms advanced by group selectionists are sufficient to allow a more conservative process, extended kin selection, to occur. In fact this is what Eibl has always meant by his version of group selection.

A final mechanism deserving of mention is collective goods. A criticism of extended kin selection is that it is impossible for an individual effectively to invest in a kin group much larger than a family, because the benefit would be spread so thinly that the payoff would always be greater from investing in close kin, rather than distant ones. Goetze (1998) has dispelled this concern. He draws on economic theory to argue that by contributing to collective goods—such as hunting large game animals or defending the group—allows an individual to confer a large fitness benefit on a large number of individuals.

So there is no mechanical problem with the feasibility of individuals showing altruism to kin groups larger than the extended family. Indeed, all these mechanism—control of free-riders, bonding the group, and choosing or fashioning collective goods—are highly scalable. They can be increased in scale to accommodate a kin group of any size. Admittedly some novel and ingenious social devices are needed to perform these functions for large groups, but humans are ingenious, as is clear from the many experiments in political evolution.

Thus the second problem in understand the evolution of ethnocentrism the second is already solved, or well on its way to being solved. It’s the first problem that remains; indeed, it has hardly been addressed. To reiterate, was the kinship between random members of bands and tribes large enough for altruism directed between them to have been adaptive?

The question should be recast in light of Goetze’s analysis of collective goods. I shall use the term ‘patriotism’ to mean altruism towards a collective good. When collective goods are available to which individuals can contribute, is the aggregate kinship of the whole group sufficiently high to allow patriotism to be adaptive, i.e. evolutionarily stable? Dawkins thinks not. He maintains that only altruism shown to close kin is adaptive. But Hamilton disagreed. In his classic 1975 paper, ‘Innate social aptitudes of man: An approach from evolutionary genetics’, he discarded the notion that inclusive fitness processes can only operate between genealogical kin, and argued that altruism can be adaptive between anonymous, genetically similar individuals.

“[C]onnections which the remote townsman does not so easily know of make up in multiplicity what they lack in close degree” (1975, p. 142).

By townsman Hamilton means the member of a band or tribe. He showed mathematically that even with a steady trickle of migration between populations, relatedness can rise as high as 0.5 between random members. Hamilton concluded that altruism on behalf of the group could then be adaptive, especially if it preserved the group from replacement. The point that inclusive fitness processes can operate between individuals merely on the basis of genetic similarity, without any genealogical information, is critical, and I quote Hamilton’s commentary on this theoretical advance.

“Because of the way it was first explained [by Hamilton], the approach using inclusive fitness has often been identified with “kin selection” and presented strictly as an alternative to “group selection” as a way of establishing altruistic social behaviour by natural selection. But…kinship should be considered just one way of getting positive regression of genotype in the recipient, and that it is this positive regression that is vitally necessary for altruism. Thus the inclusive fitness concept is more general than “kin selection” ” (Hamilton 1975, pp. 140-41; [p. 337 in the 1996 reprint]).

This frees the analyst from the “identical by descent” clause in Hamilton’s original (1964) formulation, allowing the direct measurement of kinship processes using genetic assay data. These data are usually expressed not in terms of kinship coefficients, but genetic variation, for example FST. However, Harpending (1979) provides a formula for converting FST measures to kinship coefficients.

fo = FST + (1 – FST)[ – 1/(2N – 1)]

where fo is the local kinship coefficient, FST the variance of the metapopulation, and N the overall population. Within primordial dialect groups and tribes, where N is approximately 500, the second complex term in this equation is small. When N is large, as it usually is with modern ethnies, a good approximation for the above equation becomes, simply:


(The kinship concept needs clarification. In population genetics the coefficient of kinship, f, between two individuals is defined as the probability that an allele taken randomly from one will be identical to an allele taken at the same locus from another. This definition is close to that of Hamilton’s (1964) original coefficient of relatedness r, which he used in his classic formulation of inclusive-fitness theory, except that in simple cases 2f = r. This means that parental kinship is 0.25, not 0.5. Kinship to self is 0.5, not the familiar 1.0, which refers to relatedness r. A fuller explanation is provided in Salter [in press])

Harpending’s simple formula allows the estimation of average kinship within local populations based on FST measures. The principle can be simply stated thus: variation between two populations is equal to kinship within each of them. As a hypothetical example, if the variation between two groups P and Q is FST = 0.25, then the kinship between two randomly-chosen members of P is likewise 0.25, or that of sibs or parent and child. The same applies to random pairs drawn from Q.

This brings us to the subject of this presentation: Was there sufficient genetic variation between primordial human groups for individual inclusive fitness to be boosted by acts of ethnic solidarity, by patriotism?

Let’s begin with the band, numbering between 30 and 50 individuals, comprised of two or three extended families connected by marriage ties. I could not locate data on inter-band genetic variation, but Harpending (personal communication) reports that inter-band FST is typically small, 0.01 or less. Let us assume, for illustrative purposes, that it is 0.0005. If, apart from extended family, a band numbered, say, 25 individuals, then this group’s aggregate kinship to a random individual is 0.0005 x 25 = 0.0025, which is the equivalent of one hundredth of a child. This number only has meaning in the context of competition with a neighbouring band. It will be much higher in the context of competition with more genetically distant populations. By comparison to this vanishingly small kinship, an individual’s genealogical kin might represent the genetic equivalent of five or six children (3 actual children plus cousins, grandchildren, etc.). The selection advantage of altruism towards nonkin would usually be outweighed by altruism towards kin. Nevertheless, band solidarity might have paid off because the fate of the extended family was inseparably bound up with the fate of the band. The average kinship with the band would have been high relative to the average kinship with members of neighbouring bands. (An approximation: assume that family plus others yield the equivalent of six children within the band, or an aggregate kinship of 1.5. Then average kinship is 1.5/50 = 0.03. Average kinship with neighbouring bands is –0.01.)

Genetic variation grows with the geographic scale of population units, so that dialect and tribal populations have higher kinship between random pairs than do bands. Typical variation between small dialect groups and tribes might be 0.005. FST between clusters of Bantu tribes is much higher, typically about 0.015. Between West African populations Fst varies from 0.0013 (Ewe-Volta) to 0.049 (Volta-Wolof). The average is about 0.02 (Cavalli-Sforza et al. 1994, p. 181). Neighbouring American Indian tribes have a typical genetic distance of about 0.025 (Cavalli-Sforza et al. 1994, p. 323). The Americas show high genetic variability, with an average FST of 0.070, compared to Australia’s 0.019, Polynesia’s 0.031, New Guinea’s 0.039, sub-Saharan Africa’s 0.035, and Caucasoid’s as a whole of 0.043 (Cavalli-Sforza et al. 1994, p. 336).

Genetic variation continues to increase with geographical , though recall that we are discussing autochthonous populations, those that have been resident in an area for many thousands of years. Cavalli-Sforza et al (1994, p. 122) have charted the relationship between FST and distance within large regions.



Fig. 1  The relationship between genetic distance and geographic distance within continents. Note that the curves are based on pre-colonial populations (from Cavalli-Sforza et al. 1994, p. 122).


Between continents genetic variation increases greatly. Table 1 shows the FST distances between geographical races, which can be characterized as continental-scale populations.

Africans 0.0
Non-European Caucasoids 1340 0.0
European Caucasoids 1656 155 0.0
Northeast Asians 1979 640 938 0.0
Arctic Northeast Asians 2009 708 747 460 0.0
Amerindians 2261 956 1038 747 577 0.0
Southeast Asians 2206 940 1240 631 1039 1342 0.0
Pacific Islanders 2505 954 1345 724 1181 1741 437 0.0
New Guineans and Australians 2472 1179 1346 734 1013 1458 1238 809


Table 1. Genetic variation between nine geographical races, measured as FST x 10,000 (From Cavalli-Sforza et al., 1994, p. 80; rounded to nearest integers; standard errors omitted).

Inter-racial variation is typically as high as 0.125 or even 0.25 (between Pacific Islanders and Africans). In the latter case, intra-racial kinship is the equivalent of parental kinship. Higher variation across greater geographical distances means that populations organized competitively over those distances have higher within-population kinship. At the same time, aggregate kinship will increase due to the larger size of the polity. In other words, other factors being equal, group solidarity becomes more adaptive as the scale of political organization grows. In Table 2 I estimate the aggregate kinship in child-equivalents for different types of populations. The values differ for each continent, but the FST values adopted are realistic.

Child equivalents
N Inter-pop. FST Extended family kinship Non-family group members
Band 50 0.0005 5
Dialect group 500 0.005 5 10
Large tribe 5000 0.01 5 200
Modern nation 10 mill. 0.015 5 600,000
Racially different nations 10 mill. 0.125 5 5 mill.

Table 2.  Distribution of aggregate kinship in different sized autochthonous populations based on genetic distance to neighbouring populations of the same kind.


Table 2 indicates that beyond the band, ethnic solidarity could have been adaptive, assuming that competition existed between the larger social units, that free riders were controlled and that collective goods existed in which to invest.

From the emergence of tribes in the Neolithic, social organization spanning many miles would have created scope for collective goods that benefited many hundred or thousands of individuals. The positive relationship between geographic and genetic distance would have created an adaptive opportunity for aggressively expansive group strategies, perhaps in the autocatalytic process postulated by E. O. Wilson:

“A band might then dispose of a neighboring band, appropriate its territory, and increase its own genetic representation in the metapopulation, retaining the tribal memory of this successful episode, repeating it, increasing the geographical range of its occurrence, and quickly spreading its influence still further in the metapopulation. Such primitive cultural capacity would be permitted by the possession of certain genes” (E. O. Wilson 1975, p. 573).

Eibl-Eibesfeldt (1982) makes essentially the same point, by emphasizing group cohesion and territorial displacement. Likewise Hamilton combined the factors of aggressive territorial expansion.

“[P]rimate examples suggest the prototype war party as an all-male group, brothers and kin, practised as a team in successful hunting and at last redirecting its skill towards usurping the females or territory of another group. Out of such cells can be built the somewhat less stable organism of the postneolithic army. . . . If the male war party has been adaptive for as long as is surmised here, it is hardly surprising that a similar grouping often reappears spontaneously even in circumstances where its present adaptive value is low or negative, as in modern teenage gangs.” (Hamilton 1975, p. 148)

The key elements in the strategy would have been capturing territory and replacing the conquered population in whole or part. Ethnic nepotism in the form of advancing such a strategy or defending against it would have yielded fitness payoffs much larger, though less regularly, than familial nepotism.

The Hamilton-Harpending algorithm offers an analytical tool for estimating whether a population was (or is) a fit object for altruism, and thus whether that altruism was (or is) sustainable across evolutionary time.

Combining inclusive fitness theory with gene assay data has implications for the debate regarding group selection of altruism directed towards ethnies. Research attention long focused on the possibilities of group selection of altruism should be widened to look for the preconditions for extended kin selection: ethnic kinship; control of free riders; and the availability of collective goods facilitating ethnic continuity.


 Boyd, R. and Richerson, P. J. (1992). Punishment allows the evolution of cooperation (or anything else) in sizable groups. Ethology and Sociobiology, 13: 171-195.

Cavalli-Sforza, L. L., Menozzi, P. and Piazza, A. (1994).  The history and geography of human genes. Princeton University Press, Princeton, New Jersey.

Eibl-Eibesfeldt, I. (1982). Warfare, man’s indoctrinability and group selection. Ethology (Zeitschrift für Tierpsychologie), 60: 177-98.

Goetze, D. (1998). Evolution, mobility, and ethnic group formation. Politics and the Life Sciences, 17(1): 59-71.

Hamilton, W. D. (1964). The genetic evolution of social behavior, parts 1 and 2. Journal of Theoretical Biology, 7: 1-51.

Hamilton, W. D. (1975). Innate social aptitudes of man: An approach from evolutionary genetics. In Biosocial anthropology, (ed. R. Fox), pp. 133-55. Malaby Press, London.

Harpending, H. (1979). The population genetics of interactions. American Naturalist, 113: 622-30.

Salter, F. K. (2002). Estimating ethnic genetic interests: Is it adaptive to resist replacement migration? Population and Environment, 24(2): 111-40.

Wilson, E. O. (1975).  Sociobiology: The new synthesis. Harvard University Press, Cambridge, MA.


Frank Salter

(This article originally appeared under a different title in Quadrant Online, 15 November 2017.)

A remarkable feature of the same-sex marriage movement, that has helped make it a juggernaut, is the solidarity of its disparate parts. Lesbian activists don’t mock gays before the general public, gay activists don’t ridicule bisexuals, bisexuals don’t disrespect the transgendered, and so on, presumably down the growing list of non-traditional sexual and gender orientations.

That is odd because some categories, to be discussed, are noticeably absent from that list. Possible reasons for excluding them include the law, aesthetics, and morality. Legality can be immediately ruled out. Homosexuality’s illegality until recently has not prevented agitation for gay rights. Aesthetics can also be ruled out, because LGBTQI-rights activists have been pushing back against popular revulsion for decades. If they cited legality or aesthetics to justify excluding selected types of sexuality, consistency would demand immediate cessation of their own activities. No sexual or gender category can be credibly excluded from the LGBTQI fold for legal or aesthetic reasons.

Morality is different. Morality is the only conceivable principled reason that some sexualities are excluded from the fold. Whether or not one accepts the morality of the alternative sexuality and gender movement, there are nevertheless some ethical principles associated with it. These include the rights to free expression and association. It is asserted that gender and sexual expression should be unconstrained when harmless and when entered into by mutual consent.

These principles are sufficient to explain the exclusion of paedophilia from the LGBTQI platform. It seems the great majority of individuals of all orientations reject it. Mary De Young has documented attempts by paedophile activists to normalize sex between adults and children from at least the 1980s in “The indignant page: Techniques of neutralization in the publications of pedophile organizations” (Child Abuse & Neglect, 1988).[i] A more recent study by O’Halloran and Quayle in “A content analysis of a ‘boy love’ support forum: Revisiting Durkin and Bryant” found that the trend has remained uninterrupted (Journal of Sexual Aggression, 2010). These attempts have failed to convince many people that children are able to give informed, prudent consent to sexual contact. It is true that educational packages such as the Safe Schools program sexualise children but that is not the same thing as advocating the legalization of paedophilia.

LGBTQI morality is not a credible reason for excluding all of the sexualities missing from that acronym. Consider polygamy, often called plural marriage. This was opposed by the Medieval Church and before that the Romans and Ancient Greeks, making Europe the only monogamous stratified society until the modern era.[ii] The law that enforces monogamy necessarily restricts the free choices of adults to participate in consensual polygamous relationship. If polygamy does not contravene LGBTQI moral principles, why is there not a ‘P’ in ‘LGBTQI? As Brendon Wynter noted recently on our public broadcaster (ABC Religion & Ethics, 24 March 2017) attempts to find a moral distinction between plural and same-sex marriage can lead to illiberal claims, such as that polygamy but not homosexual marriage is “bad or at least, trivial”.[iii]

A ‘P’ should be added to ‘LGBTQI’.

Incest is also missing from the LGBTQI heading. From an LGBTQI moral perspective, why ban sex or marriage between any consenting adults? As the actor Jeremy Irons commented a few years ago, genetic disorders in the children of incestuous unions are only an issue with heterosexual pairs.[iv] LGBTQI advocates are not in a position to complain about incest on the basis of its being gay or lesbian. From their perspective, love and lust between consenting adults should never be condemned.

On what grounds could LGBTQI advocates object to marriages between mother and daughter or father and son, or object to them adopting? One ground that has been raised is a supposed categorical difference between those sexually attracted to close kin and those sexually attracted to members of the same sex. The former, it is claimed, do not belong to a distinct class of individuals but the latter do.[v] In the case of same-sex attraction, it is proposed, accurately, that homosexual orientation is sometimes inborn, and that as a result these individuals cannot change their same-sex attraction. Preventing them from marrying the same sex is therefore discriminatory. Incest is held to be different on the basis of the claim that it is a matter of free choice. For that reason, banning incestuous marriage does not constitute discrimination, and is therefore consistent with liberal ethics. This argument breaks down with the second premise, that incestuous desire is not inborn. The Finnish sociologist Edward Westermarck discovered that incest avoidance is a universal inborn trait that is triggered by close proximity during childhood. De Smet, van Speybroeck and Verplaetse investigated this theory in Evolution and Human Behavior (2014) and found that children raised together are usually averse to sexual contact during and after puberty.[vi] It follows that sexual desire for a sibling or offspring is in part or whole due to genetically-programmed developmental processes. The fact that incestuous motivation is produced when these processes go awry does not make them any less inborn. Thus incestuous motivation is not always a matter of free choice and in such cases, according to LGBTQI ethics, it is a right when consensual and harmless.

An ‘I’ should be added to ‘LGBTQI’.

Bestiality also presents difficulties for the brevity of ‘LGBTQI’. On which grounds can advocates condemn sex with animals? As already noted, legal and aesthetic distinctions are unavailable. The rule against cruelty is also unavailable most of the time. Cruelty is wrong, and sex with animals can be cruel but so can sex with humans. The fact that animals cannot consent is not relevant because they do not, as a rule, possess human rights. In Australia and many other countries animals are protected against cruel treatment, but that does not include protection against being killed and eaten. Apart from militant vegetarians and vegans, most feel justified eating animals, so it is not obvious why, without invoking traditional moral or aesthetic standards, sexual contact that does not inflict suffering can be considered immoral.

The bestiality category is not an empty hypothetical. A recent academic study by Earls and Lalumiere titled “A case study of preferential bestiality”, published in the journal Archives of Sexual Behavior (2009), indicates that it is not as rare as previously thought, and shares many of the characteristics of other atypical sexual interests.[vii] Likewise, a recent report in the Australian online edition of The Guardian by Mona Chalabi, “Bestiality: which animals are most at risk” (22 June 2017), describes the online zoosexual movement that advocates the rights of the bestially inclined.[viii] The most preferred species appear to be dogs and cows, but cases are reported involving horses and even snakes. Woody Allen might add sheep.[ix]

There is a human dimension to the issue. Members of what we might reluctantly call the zoosexual community feel they are treated unfairly by the mainstream, which includes the LGBTQI movement. Some feel trapped in human relationships, such as the man who felt that sex with his (human) wife was “wrong” and during marital acts closed his eyes to better pretend she was a horse. Earlier this year an article in The Independent reported that animal sex tourism became such a problem in Denmark that in 2016 the country criminalized bestiality.[x] The journalist hinted that bestiality usually conforms to the harm principle: “[T]he studies published over the last 15 years using non-clinical samples report the vast majority of zoophiles do not appear to be suffering any significant clinical[ly] significant distress or impairment as a consequence of their behavior.”

Surely most LGBTQI people will share the generally-held opinion of bestiality. Many will be disgusted by the very thought and wish it never to be depicted or praised in public. They will wish that it never be part of their social environment and certainly not that of any child’s.

However, if LGBTQI activists believe the position they urge on the public, consistency demands they not only tolerate bestiality but treat it as possessing equal rights to human-centric sex. Otherwise they are guilty of the illiberal prejudice of claiming that their kind of love is superior to others they deem deviant. And if even the proponents of LGBTQI rights were to admit the legitimacy of privileging one sexual or gender orientation over another, then their main defence against hetero-normativity would collapse.

An extra ‘B’ should also be added to the acronym.

Other initials could be added. Why not an ‘R’ for love of robots and dolls? Blow up dolls and simple silicone mannequins with recorded voices are primitive compared to the pleasure model “replicants” depicted in the science fiction classic Blade Runner. Nevertheless, they are beginning to compete for men’s affections.[xi] This is a rapidly growing industry feeding insatiable demand. The Third International Congress on Love and Sex with Robots is to be held in London in December 2017.[xii] Professor Noel Sharkey, chairman of the Foundation for Responsible Robotics, points to guilt-free threesomes as a potential use of sex robots.[xiii] He and colleagues predict that many humans will have sexual relationships with robots. Evidence is already emerging of men feeling embarrassed about seeking sex and companionship from artificial women.[xiv] Women might also suffer embarrassment when robot gigolos become feasible. From the perspective of LGBTQI morality it is wrong to shun or mock people just because they are turned on by machines.

An ‘R’ should be added to ‘LGBTQI’.

One suspects that pragmatism is a big reason why LGBTQI activists want to keep polygamy, incest, bestiality and sex robots in the closet. Activists do not want to openly associate with these categories because that would increase opposition. The public might wonder about the implications. If exotic gender identities and same-sex marriage are to be taught in schools as equal to the heterosexual types, why not polygamy, incest, bestiality, and sex dolls? Citizens would be more likely to resist demands for full legal equality until the slippery slope were shown to have principled limits.

LGBTQI campaigns assert that love is equal, yet they help marginalize attachments and acts they find repugnant or inconvenient. The activist community should acknowledge all types of sexuality and marriage that meet their professed moral standard. They should not deceive the public by selectively applying their morality.

Alternatively, activists should abandon their artificial solidarity and the morality they deploy to justify it. They should admit that not all sexual desire and acts and types of marriage are equal. Many will join with the straight binary community in rejecting the appropriateness of polygamy, incest and bestiality. In so doing they might view their own orientation with humility and ponder whether insisting on complete normalisation is good for society.

Until LGBTQI activists admit the radical implications of their morality, the spelling of ‘GBTQI’ and its variations should be contested. Rearranging the extra letters discussed, consistency demands an extra ‘B’, ‘I’, ‘R’ and ‘P’ (at least). In addition, the rainbow flag deserves a jarring additional stripe standing for the arbitrarily excluded categories as well as the hypocrisy of LGBTQI activists. Such as honest inclusive symbol would also serve to inform the public of where the arguments of the radical sexuality and gender movement logically lead.

Let us add ‘BIRP’ to ‘LGBTQI’ until activists apply their arguments consistently. When they do, they also will adopt the extra letters and perhaps some other besides.


[i] De Young, Mary (1988). The indignant page: Techniques of neutralization in the publications of pedophile organizations. Child Abuse & Neglect 12(4): 583-591.

O’Halloran, E. and E. Quayle (2010). A content analysis of a ‘boy love’ support forum: Revisiting Durkin and Bryant. Journal of Sexual Aggression 16(1): 71-85.

[ii] MacDonald, K. B. (1995). The establishment and maintenance of socially imposed monogamy in Western Europe [with peer commentary]. Politics and the Life Sciences, 14(1), 3-46.

[iii] Brendon Wynter (2017). Why supporters of same-sex marriage need better arguments. ABC Religion & Ethics, 24 March., accessed 9 Oct. 2017.

[iv] Brett Malec (2013). Jeremy Irons’ controversial gay marriage “incest” comments: “Could a father not marry his son?” Enews. 5 April., accessed 26 Oct. 2017.

[v] Alexander S King, Comment, Does gay marriage justify incest marriage because both are consensual activity? [closed] Stack Exchange — Philosophy, 1 Jan. 2016 at 9:22 and edited 2 Jan. 2016 at 6:14, Accessed 26 Oct. 2017.

[vi] De Smet, D., Van Speybroeck, L., & Verplaetse, J. (2014). The Westermarck effect revisited: A psychophysiological study of sibling incest aversion in young adults. Evolution and Human Behavior, 35(1), 34-42.

[vii] Earls, C. M. and M. L. Lalumiere (2009). A case study of preferential bestiality. Archives of Sexual Behavior 38(4): 605-609.

[viii] Mona Chalabi (2017). Bestiality: which animals are most at risk. The Guardian (Australian edition). 22 June 2017.

[ix] Woody Allen (1972). Sheep scene, Everything you always wanted to know about sex., accessed 9 Oct. 2017.

[x] Griffiths, M. (2016). Why would anyone want to have sex with an animal? The psychology of bestiality. The Independent (London). 2 February,, accessed 18.10.2017.

[xi] Amanda Devlin and Emma Lake (2017). Robot romps. What is a robot sex doll, why has a Barcelona brothel replaced women with blow-up dolls and how much do they cost? The Sun (London)., accessed 31 Oct. 2017.

[xii], accessed 29 Oct. 2017.

[xiii] FRR report: Our sexual future with robots. 31 October 2017.

[xiv] Alistair Himmer (2017). Looking for love: Unhappy Japanese men turn to silicone sex dolls. 30 June., accessed 31 October 2017.

Are we getting smarter or dumber? Interview with Michael A. Woodley

According to the “Flynn Effect” humans are getting smarter and smarter. We know more than we ever did and score higher on IQ tests than our parents. But the number of geniuses is falling, as is mental speed, as measured by response-tests. What gives? Dr. Michael Woodley, interviewed here by Frank Salter, finds evidence that the English were smarter 100 years ago than they are today, based on response-test data collected from 1904. Dr Woodley concludes that our genetic potential is falling, perhaps due to the relaxation of Darwinian selection over the last century.

A General Social Impact Assessment of Mosques in Australian Neighbourhoods

Read or download the formatted version in PDF here.

I thank contributors to my writing fund, who made this research possible.


Frank Salter

Social Technologies Pty Ltd

26 June 2016


Executive summary

A social impact study provides planning authorities with information about how a proposed development will most likely affect a population’s way of life, culture, sense of community (identity and social cohesion), social and architectural environment, health and wellbeing. Existing social impact assessments of mosques were reviewed and found to be empirically incomplete, theoretically weak and ethnocentric.

The study applies a biosocial theory, Ethnic Nepotism, that has proven useful in explaining and predicting the effects of ethno-religious diversity. Religions are conceptualised as entities that evolved culturally to solve adaptation problems. To generate a hypothesis concerning distinctive Muslim behaviour, overseas social impacts were reviewed. The results were two hypotheses of the social impact of Muslims in Australian neighbourhoods.

The first hypothesis is that ethno-religious diversity causes a loss of trust and cohesion in Australian communities as it does overseas. The second hypothesis is that distinctive Muslim characteristics cause additional negative social impacts.

The first hypothesis is confirmed quantitatively by seven studies conducted between 2006 and 2013. Muslims formed part of the diversity being studied but were not a focus of the research. One study by the Australian Bureau of Statistics found that in 2014 diverse communities volunteer less, as do immigrants of non-English speaking background. Four of the studies were surveys conducted by the Scanlon Foundation in conjunction with the Multicultural Foundation of Australia. The surveys, published in 2007, 2009, 2012 and 2012, all found that diversity significantly undercuts feelings of trust and safety, confidence in harmony, the quality of life, support for immigration, and acceptance of refugees.

The second hypothesis was confirmed quantitatively by seven lines of converging evidence. Muslim communities are associated with strongly negative social impacts for long-time Australians (third generation), much worse than those produced by ethno-religious diversity or by Buddhism, the other large minority religion.

The Scanlon area surveys indicate that in areas with large Muslim populations, disapproval of Muslims is about five times the disapproval of Buddhists in areas with large Buddhist populations. This result has been repeated by every survey since 2010 when the question was first included. Even among strong supporters of multiculturalism, who generally accept minorities, in 2014 as many as 18 per cent were negative towards Muslims, but only 2 per cent towards Buddhists. In the same year, when the survey was conducted more anonymously online, overall negative attitudes towards Muslims rose to 44 per cent. The findings are replicated in patterns of reported discrimination. While ethnic groups within Islam were disapproved, the negativity towards the Islamic religion was stronger.

The Scanlon results were confirmed by a Roy Morgan poll in 2013, which found that 70 per cent of respondents distrusted Islamic influence, and a Progress Institute survey in 2015, which found that only 24 per cent of respondents felt “very safe”, a sharp fall from the 42 per cent who gave that reply in 2010.

These extensive survey results were confirmed by imprisonment rates in Victoria, NSW and Queensland. Overall, Muslims are imprisoned at almost three times their proportion of the population. In addition, Muslim unemployment and public dependency rates are two to three times greater than the Australian averages. Finally, lack of affiliation with Australia is indicated by patterns of Muslim military volunteering. About five times the number of Australian Muslims have volunteered or attempted to volunteer for jihadist forces in the Middle East than are presently serving in the Australian Armed Forces. This, despite a very high casualty rate suffered by jihadists.

These converging lines of evidence help explain the survey findings of a steep decline in social cohesion and a rise in fear and uncertainty in areas with large numbers of Muslims and a similarly steep decline in acceptance of Muslims nationwide.

Qualitative evidence offers further confirmation of these results, while adding behavioural detail. Muslim and Middle Eastern communities contribute disproportionately to terrorism and organised crime, according to state and federal security experts. Islamic terrorism is responsible for the National Terrorism Threat Advisory System warning that another act of domestic terrorism is “probable”, a high setting to which it was raised in September 2014. Muslims show ethnic variation in rates of terrorism, high for Lebanese, low for Indonesians. However, the latter constitute only 5.9 per cent of Australian Muslims, and jihadism is increasing in Indonesia, Malaysia and the Philippines. Criminal Muslim families are so prominent in distribution of illicit drugs and related violence, that Victoria and NSW both have had crime squads dedicated to “Middle Eastern Crime”. These threats are predicted by experts to last for generations. Contributing to this are low Muslim intermarriage rates, also evident in Europe.

Organised crime and terrorism belong to a wider spectrum of anti-social behaviour. The qualitative evidence includes descriptions of anti-social behaviour, including the broad-spectrum crime described in earlier, anti-white assaults and harassment, and hyper-masculine and misogynist culture among young men. Similar accounts are provided by experienced journalists and police. The view from within Islam tacitly confirms these accounts either by calling for a more pacifist Islam in tune with Australian values, or by denouncing Australian society.

To summarise, quantitative and qualitative data indicate that Muslims exert negative social impacts on local neighbourhoods significantly beyond that caused by ethno-religious diversity. More than immigrants and minorities in general, Muslims weaken community identity and cohesion, reduce trust and sense of public safety, and increase anti-social behaviour, crime, and unemployment in local areas. In addition, Islamic populations and mosques increase the risk of organised crime and terrorism, a trend expected to last for generations.

Mosques contribute to negative social impacts in their areas by attracting Muslims and by reproducing Islamic doctrines and identity. They also slow assimilation by promoting within-group marriage. Robust group identity, an adaptive feature of Islam, slows adoption of Australian values as well as degrading local identity and cohesion.

The policy implications of this general SIA are that: (1) mosque proposals should be accompanied by SIAs describing social impacts in the categories reviewed in the present study; (2) “territorial multiculturalism” be facilitated in which councils are permitted to preserve the cultural and religious identities of their communities.


  1. Introduction


1.1  Social impact assessment: Australian and international standards

In the last several years the residents of Australia’s towns and cities have often opposed the building and commissioning of mosques and Islamic schools in their neighbourhoods. At the same time the practice of including social impact studies as part of councils’ assessment of development proposals has gained greater acceptance. These follow on from the use of impact studies concerning the environment and economy. The Planning Institute of Australia explains:

Social impact assessment (SIA) refers to the assessment of the social consequences of a proposed decision or action, namely the impacts on affected groups of people and on their way of life, life chances, health, culture and capacity to sustain these.[i]

At council level, social impact assessments can give the public the opportunity to provide feedback about how they think a proposed development will affect them. For nation-wide assessment such as the present document, public consultation necessarily consists of surveys.

Social impact statements are not compulsory for all developments and the Planning Institute expresses concern “that actions have sometimes been taken, and decisions made, on an ill-informed basis and which did not foresee some serious social consequences before they eventuated”. The Institute states that a social impact assessment should be required to accompany any assessment of environmental or economic impact.

The Planning Institute’s guidelines are based on international principles laid down by the International Association of Impact Assessment (IAIA), prepared by Frank Vanclay, an authority in the field. The international guidelines are more explicit in identifying the ethno-cultural environment’s potential effect on social wellbeing. They conceptualise social impacts as social changes. Several of the changes described by the IAIA are likely to result from building a religious facility. These are changes to:

  • people’s way of life – that is, how they live, work, play and interact with one another on a day-to-day basis;
  • their culture – that is, their shared beliefs, customs, values and language or dialect;
  • their community – its cohesion, stability, character, services and facilities;
  • their environment – . . . the level of hazard or risk . . . they are exposed to; . . . their physical safety . . .;
  • their health and wellbeing – health is a state of complete physical, mental, social and spiritual wellbeing and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity;
  • their fears and aspirations – their perceptions about their safety, their fears about the future of their community, and their aspirations for their future and the future of their children.[ii]

Notice that the impacts include objective changes as well as changes to psychological wellbeing–“fears and aspirations”. Mental wellbeing is an emerging focus of governments and public health professionals not only because anxiety and depression reduce quality of life but because they are a burden on public finances and business productivity.[iii] Construction of ethno-cultural facilities such as mosques, churches and temples have the capacity to affect a neighbourhood’s way of life, culture, sense of community, social and architectural environment, and health and wellbeing.

This paper assesses the general social impacts, especially at the local level, of Muslim communities compared to non-Muslim society, including Christian and Buddhist communities. Attention will be given to questions of local identity, sense of belonging and cohesion, quantitatively and qualitatively.

  1. Review of social impact assessments of Australian mosques

Despite the sometimes fierce controversies over mosques and the simultaneous emergence of standards of social impact assessment, it is difficult to locate balanced and informed analyses of mosques’ social impacts. This confirms the Planning Institute’s concern that SIA standards are not well developed. This review indicates that the deficiencies can result from inadequate science as well as bias due to various motives.

There are two types of SIA: those presented to local councils in support of development applications; and a broader historical and social science perspective, often looking back in time. In both types, balanced assessment of likely social impacts is sacrificed in favour of analytically weak case-making.

An example of the first type is a social impact statement concerning a mosque proposed for Cessnock, submitted by the Newcastle Muslim Association Inc (NMA), which was published on 3 March 2016.[iv] A detailed examination reveals inadequacies.

The assessment begins with a social overview of the area. In the 2011 census, Muslims were 0.4 per cent of the wider Hunter Valley population, mainly situated in Newcastle University’s international student body. Ethnicity was described as 88-89 per cent born in Australia, with 90 per cent speaking only English at home (pp. 15-16). Religion in the area was 70-71 per cent Christian, 18-20 per cent with no religious affiliation, and 0.22 per cent Islamic (in Buchanan where the new mosque was proposed to be built). (p. 16). The educational, income and unemployment profiles were provided.

The quality of analysis in the NMA’s assessment can be judged by considering response to objections concerning negative social impact. Of interest here are concerns related to the development’s ethno-religious identity, i.e. objections that would not have been raised if the proposed building were a church. These concerns were that a mosque would: (1) lower property values; (2) attract Muslims and opponents of the mosque; (3) be too large for local needs because the area has no Muslim residents; (4) lead to further Islamic development because of the site’s large area; (5) be an eyesore and clash with the rural setting; (6) negatively impact residents who have chosen the Cessnock district for its distinctive rural setting; (7) be unwelcomed by local residents or those in nearby towns; (8) cause concern among residents who object to Islam, sharia law, and related extremist ideology; and (9) would create divisions within the community (pp. 20-21).

This list does not include expression of concern about future crime rates. But the assessment treats crime in a major section (pp. 26-31) without explaining why the subject is included. It is implied, but not stated, that Muslims do not present a crime threat because the postcode with an existing mosque has a lower-than-average crime rate. Statistics are not cited for Muslim crime rates for the state or nationally. Much of the section is devoted to assurances that the mosque will be safe from vandalism and other crime, with no treatment of risks posed by the mosque to the rest of the neighbourhood (pp. 28-31). If the subject was raised to answer objections from local residents, it does nothing to provide an assessment of their risk from incoming Muslims. This is an extraordinary oversight for a document calling itself a social impact assessment. In fact Muslim crime rates are much greater than that of non-Muslims, as documented below regarding general crime (section 4.4), terrorism (section 5.1), and criminal gangs (section 5.3).

The list also fails to address objection (6) about the loss of the area’s rural identity, (7) about residents’ preference not to have a mosque in the area, and (9) about the mosque’s likely divisiveness. These objections relate to community identity, culture and cohesion, close to the values set out by the Planning Institute of Australia and the International Association of Impact Assessment, discussed earlier.

Seven concerns were discussed in the assessment.

Concerning objection (1) about property values, the NMA assessment rejected the concern by asserting, without citing evidence, that only a small number of residents would view the mosque negatively (p. 23). It further stated that there was no evidence indicating that the mosque would affect land prices (p. 37), but offered no comparative or longitudinal data.

Concerning objections (2) and (3) about Muslims being drawn to the area, the assessment drew an analogy between worshippers and workers. Both may come from different locations to a place of worship or employment. The reply did not examine whether the objection was based on the second concern, that a mosque would attract Muslims, thus changing the character of the neighbourhood. But it did deny that more Muslims would be drawn to the local area, because like workers they could travel efficiently by car or bus. This statement conflicts with another impact statement concerning a Brisbane mosque, [v] discussed presently, indicating that mosques tend to transform their local neighbourhoods by drawing worshippers. Mosques are central to Muslim life because of the practice of praying five times every day.

Concerning objection (4), the assessment effectively confirmed concerns by stating that the NMA had the right to apply to council for permission for further buildings.

Concerning objection (5), the NMA assessment noted that the development was permitted under existing zoning provisions. Nevertheless, local concerns were heeded and the proposed mosque was moved 15 metres further back from the main road, and would now be screened by trees. Changes to the mosque’s planned colour were also made to allay concerns about aesthetics and mismatch with the area.

Concerning objection (8), the assessment stated that the NMA had the right to build a mosque, under the provisions of the United Nations Covenant on Civil and Political Rights 1966, which the Australian Government had ratified. However, the quote from Article 18 does not assert a right to construct religious buildings in any location. “Freedom to manifest one’s religion or beliefs may be subject only to such limitations as are prescribed by law and are necessary to protect public safety, order, health or morals or the fundamental rights and freedoms of others.” (p. 24) These criteria overlap those raised by the International Social Planning Institute for protecting local communities’ health and wellbeing. The NMA did not deny that a mosque would increase the likelihood of sharia law or extremist ideology entering the local area. It is reasonable for local residents to have these potential impacts assessed.

Concerning objection (9), the NMA replied that it had a right to make application to develop a site. Also: “Division within the community is not an intentional consequence of this development and typically does not appear to be present in suburbs where mosques exist in Wallsend and Mayfield.” (p. 23) It was also stated that the objections concerning division were ideological (p. 23). All three statements are inadequate responses if the aim is to assess social impacts. The right to construct a building does not diminish its potential effects. Assessing social impacts of other mosques would have necessitated gathering data from stakeholders and comparison of demographic and opinion trends before and after the mosques were constructed. Concern about social divisions is not necessarily an ideologically-based position, and the NMA assessment presents no evidence that ideology was involved.

Following these replies to objections, from page 32 the NMA’s assessment devoted a chapter to a “Social Impact Assessment”, though the whole document carries the same title. The section begins by stating that having a nearby mosque would constitute a significant positive social impact for local Muslims by reducing the need to travel to worship. The non-Muslim population would also benefit by gaining a greater understanding of Islam, the assessment states (p. 33), but does not note the possibility of doctrinal disagreement growing with familiarity. After discussing noise, traffic and visual impacts, population effects are briefly covered. The local population is expected to remain unchanged, because worshippers will be able to reach the new mosque within 20 minutes drive from Newcastle. As noted earlier, no reference was made to the Muslims being drawn to the immediate vicinity of a mosque. However, the issue is implied by an argument to the effect that Muslims would not be attracted to the area because “existing mosques are located all over Australia” and the Hunter Valley has fewer than 0.5 per cent Muslims (p. 36). But four pages earlier it is stated that the Hunter Valley has “no purpose built mosques”. As a result, a new mosque will draw worshippers away from more crowded places of worship.

A section on public safety refers readers back to the chapter on crime, which dealt with possible transgressions on mosque premises.

The NMA’s assessment was ethnocentric in its emphasis on the benefits to Muslims combined with disregard for social costs to the established community. It did not take objections seriously. No effort was made to assess the general impact of mosques. No objection based on fear of Muslim crime was acknowledged. No credence was given to concerns about changes to the character or cohesion of the area, or to the likelihood of extremism.

Broad academic-style treatments of social impacts, often historical in perspective, also demonstrate ethnocentrism and disregard for the majority culture.

The most impressive study found of a mosque’s social effects brings out themes that recur in academic treatments. In 2014 historians Yasmeen Vahed and Goolam Vahed published a study of a mosque development in Brisbane: “The Development Impact of Mosque Location on Land Use in Australia: A Case Study of Masjid al Farooq in Brisbane”.[vi] The authors are at the University of KwaZulu-Natal in South Africa.[vii] The main social impacts considered were those experienced by Muslims, for example an arson attack on the mosque in the wake of the September 2001 terrorist attack on the United States (pp. 7-8). Twenty local non-Muslims were surveyed, revealing some critical views concerning gender segregation and cultural differences affecting dress. The main criticism of the mosque concerned traffic and parking congestion. Individuals personally acquainted with Muslims had more positive views.

Most respondents were happy with the mosque and believed it did not reduce property prices, increase crime, attract unwelcome individuals, or promote Islamic fundamentalism (p. 12). However, these perceptions were not tested against the evidence, except for the reporting of one “dramatic” beneficial impact on Muslims – the mosque attracted more Muslims to the area. Only 1.1 per cent of the Brisbane population was Muslim, while in the immediate vicinity of the mosque the proportion was 12 per cent. The authors explain that this is due to the great importance of mosques to many Muslims; they are “the pivot of their lives” (p. 1).

Clustering around the mosque underscores its importance to Muslims—they function as “community centres”, places where Muslims pray, socialise, educate their children, prepare the dead for burial, get married, and collect money for the needy. The mosque has had an indirect impact on the types of businesses operating in the area–butchers, restaurants, Islamic schools, specialty clothing stores. [p. 13]

Instead of empirical tests of residents’ concerns, Vahed and Vahed criticised those who object to other mosques. They did so by citing various expert opinions (p. 3). Justice J. Lloyd of the NSW Land and Environment Court in 2003 was quoted overturning the Baulkham Hills Shire Council’s refusal of an application to build a mosque. The Justice warned that councils should “not blindly accept the subjective fears and concerns expressed in the public submissions [which] appear to have little basis in fact”. However, Vahed and Vahed did not report or provide links to the Justice’s reasoning.

Another expert quoted was Laura Bugg, a sociologist at Sydney University, who wrote that “opposition to Islamic schools in Camden and Bankstown in metropolitan Sydney was based on arguments that the schools would be incompatible with the surrounding environment; the absence of Muslims in the area; and a ‘moral panic’ about increased crime.” Again, these arguments were not delineated or empirically tested, except for the observation that the concerns are not raised when Catholic or Anglican schools are proposed. This would have been an effective demonstration of bias had the authors presented evidence that Christian schools have the same social impacts on local neighbourhood as Muslim schools. But Bugg could not be drawn on for such information because her field of expertise is critical discourse analysis, which studies texts, not behaviour. Nevertheless, Bugg claims that studying anti-mosque arguments  reveals how white privilege is expressed by local residents to disadvantage non-Christian religions.[viii] Such views are used by Vahed and Vahed to conclude that residents’ real fear was that the Islamic schools would attract Muslim families to the area and change its racial and religious composition. The accusation is plausible but not substantiated empirically. Nor were the consequences of rising Muslim numbers examined.

Further experts were introduced to criticise opponents of Muslim religious centres. A statement was quoted from social scientists Kevin Dunn, Natascha Klocker, and Tanya Salabay, in their 2007 paper “Contemporary racism and Islamophobia in Australia: Racializing religion”. Vahed and Vahed quote Dunn and colleagues: “[O]pposition to mosque development in Sydney had depended heavily on stereotypes of Islam as fanatical, intolerant, militant, fundamentalist, misogynist and alien”.[ix] No empirical evidence could be quoted from the paper to counter these stereotypes, because the paper does not describe Muslim behaviour or culture. Instead, Dunn and colleagues rely on public opinion surveys revealing “Islamophobia” in non-Muslims, content analysis of “racialized pathologies of Muslims and their spaces”, and examination of alleged Islamophobia that occurs in the political discourse on asylum seekers. The concepts ‘racism’ and ‘Islamophobia’ are broadly and copiously applied in this paper, though these are prejudicial terms that are not behaviourally defined. No publication titles by the lead researcher, Kevin Dunn, Professor of Geography at the University of Western Sydney, appear to examine negative effects of Muslims or other immigrant groups on non-Muslims.[x] But whatever its merits, the analysis contains no treatment of Muslims’ impact on non-Muslim Australians and cannot be considered a balanced social impact statement applicable to most Australians.

Vahed and Vahed’s policy recommendations reaffirm the ethnocentric bias of existing social impact literature concerning mosques. They recommend that town planners be trained in practical multiculturalism, by which they mean learning about the “cultural and religious needs of minority groups”. Applications to develop mosques should be seen as expressions of minority cultural rights, not as normal urban planning. If clustering of Muslims is a problem, the solutions could be to approve a larger number of smaller mosques to reduce concentrations. Social cohesion would be improved if the Federal Government subsidised the building of mosques (p. 14). The self-serving wish list was softened only by the proposal that stakeholders be able to express their opinions in town hall style meetings.

The paper does not take seriously concerns about the social impacts of mosques or the Muslims they attract to local areas. It provides no statistics concerning property prices, crime, anti-social behaviour or terrorism, which might have explained why there has been less opposition to mosques in Queensland. Instead, public criticisms of mosques are characterised as “moral panics”, thought by many Muslims to be expressions of “Islamophobia and racism”. Opponents of mosques are interpreted to be racially motivated, due to the White Australia Policy (p. 2).

Vahed and Vahed’s paper indicates that advocates for the Muslim community are taking advantage of Western multiculturalism, in which the state licenses minority interests while ignoring those of the majority. The latter are not attributed with legitimate interests but are portrayed as aggressors against minorities.[xi] State licensing includes indoctrination of the majority in the legitimacy of minority preferences, without balancing instruction in majority interests.[xii]

Other publications fit this ethnocentric pattern, though are less concerned with social impact. One source that is cited is a university thesis produced by Hassan Mourad in 2006, which examined the development and land use impacts of local mosques.[xiii] The thesis discusses ways in which council planners can better accommodate mosques, without considering possible social impacts on the larger community.

Mourad’s thesis is cited by Noel Villaroman in his 2015 book, Treading on sacred grounds: Places of worship, local planning and religious freedom in Australia.[xiv] Again, the analysis takes the perspective of Muslims confronted by intolerant residents and councils able to thwart their religious freedom by denying permission to build mosques. The book examines the degree to which councils conform with international human rights law in their treatment of Muslims.

Another ethnocentric study was produced by Amanda Wise and Jan Ali for Macquarie University’s Centre for Research on Social Inclusion. It deals exclusively with discrimination and racism directed against Muslims. Social impacts on non-Muslims are not examined or even hypothesised.[xv] It can be appropriate to focus on one culture, the better to understand its characteristics and needs. [xvi] But policy, including approvals of development applications, should consider the interests of all stakeholders.

The above brief review indicates that SIAs of mosques are often compromised by an ethnocentric focus on Muslims as victims. Generally ignored is the equally important question of how a mosque or Muslims affect the majority population in an area. It is not uncommon for academic studies to criticise those who are concerned about mosques without evaluating the complaints. The studies just reviewed fall short of the standard of analysis advocated by the Planning Institute of Australia or its international affiliate. This is true with regard to goals, because these studies do not pretend to assess how mosques (or churches or temples) might affect a neighbourhood’s way of life, culture, sense of community, social and architectural environment, and health and wellbeing. It is also true with regard to theory and method, because the reviewed studies do not offer a basis for predicting social impacts. This fails to meet the Planning Institute’s standard: “Social impact assessment of policies or plans should be sufficiently robust to anticipate the impact of proposals made under the plan.”[xvii]

This review also indicates that the deficiencies can result from inadequate analysis. The sociological disciplines (sociology, political studies, cultural anthropology; women’s studies) are underdeveloped, with little or no consensus on theory or methodology.[xviii] A contributing factor is the politicisation of the social sciences and their resulting separation from the biological sciences. Australia suffers from this more than most Western societies.[xix] The excessive influence of anti-biology ideology in Australian universities might also facilitate the minority ethnocentrism that mars the social impact literature. Because the problem is chronic, planning authorities would be advised to expect SIAs from different schools of thought and interest groups to provide contrasting analyses.

The analytical weakness of the social impact literature increases the burden of a rigorous impact statement by necessitating the enunciation of a theoretical and methodological basis for comparing ethno-religious social impacts.


  1. Theoretical basis and hypotheses


2.1  Biosocial theories of ethno-religious diversity

For a social impact assessment to anticipate the effects of policies, it must be based on firm theoretical and methodological foundations. Unfortunately, existing social impact studies of mosques are theoretically weak. Their ethnocentrism and failure to engage behavioural science disqualify them as theoretical models. The present study applies biosocial science, an interdisciplinary field that studies human nature and society by drawing on biology in addition to conventional approaches. Biosocial approaches have been applied to all social phenomena, from gender to organisations, from politics to art.[xx] They have proven useful in explaining and predicting group behaviour, especially in relation to the effects of ethno-religious diversity. This field of research has been developing since the 1970s, mainly in Europe and the United States.

Of particular use in this regard is Ethnic Nepotism Theory, which has proven itself useful in studying and predicting a range of ethnic phenomena, including the family character of mafia-style criminal groups, ethnic middleman minorities, and nationalist freedom fighters.[xxi] The theory also correctly predicted a negative relationship between ethnic diversity and welfare rights.[xxii] Ethno-religious populations are seen as loosely bound by kinship ideology – belief in descent from common ancestors – as well as actual kinship both genetic and cultural.

Ethnic nepotism theory predicts that ethno-religious diversity incurs substantial social costs of diminished trust and cohesion as well as rising conflict. This has been confirmed by cross-cultural research. One recent study compared 176 contemporary societies, finding that 66 per cent of global variation in conflict was explained by ethno-religious heterogeneity.[xxiii] Conflict was widely defined to include not only violence but discrimination, affirmative action and interest groups of the kind found in Australia and other multicultural societies. Ethnic Nepotism Theory also predicted that ethnic diversity would reduce social cohesion, which was independently confirmed by the famous study by Harvard political scientist Robert Putnam in 2006.[xxiv] Putnam found that rising diversity in U.S. cities caused a decline in trust and cooperation. This finding was replicated at the neighbourhood level in a longitudinal English study, which found that social cohesion was restored when people moved to a more homogeneous area.[xxv]

That diversity brings costs is to be expected from knowledge of human evolution. Humans evolved in culturally and religiously homogeneous groups. Ethno-cultural diversity is novel on the evolutionary and historical time frames. As a result negative social impacts are not surprising.

Another biosocial theory seeks to explain the altruism and passionate loyalty elicited by religion. David Sloane Wilson, an evolutionary biologist at Binghamton University, U.S.A., conceptualises religions as adaptive systems that coordinate the behaviour of groups beyond kin and sometimes beyond tribe.[xxvi] Co-religionists are drawn together by shared rituals and beliefs. For millennia religion was humans’ most powerful group strategy outside the family, and still exerts considerable influence. When religious and ethnic ties coincide, as they often do with Muslim populations, group solidarity is enhanced.

These theories help explain why endogamy, or marrying within the ethno-religious population, is a universal human tendency. All ethno-religious groups are endogamous to various degrees, though the religions and segmentary societies of the Middle East and Africa are at the high end of the spectrum. Endogamy is generally adaptive, for example by maintaining a higher level of parental kinship and retaining religious and cultural identity and cohesion.[xxvii] This is relevant to the present study because Muslims show relatively high rates of endogamy, as discussed in section 5.4 below. Islam discourages out-marriage, as have many traditional faiths. Denominations of Christianity and Judaism have urged congregations to marry within the faith. Endogamy is a normal part of ethnic and religious group behaviour.[xxviii]

2.2  The social impact of Muslims in Western societies

The biosocial theory of ethnic diversity is well tested but the theory of religion is not sufficiently developed to generate hypotheses about particular religions. To gain insights into likely social impacts of Islam in Australia, overseas examples need to be studied.

Terrorism is the most high-profile impact of Muslims. Islamic communities are a major source of terror directed at the West and at other Muslims despite relatively small numbers. There have been Islamist terror attacks in the U.S., France, Spain and Britain in recent years, committed in part by Muslim men of immigrant descent born and raised in those countries.

Economic inequality, unemployment and self-segregation are contributing to social polarisation in Sweden, Belgium and the Netherlands, mostly among the Muslim immigrant population. The situation is less pronounced in Germany, Austria, Switzerland and France where policies promote more assimilation, and in Britain, where welfare is less generous.[xxix]

In Sweden immigrants from Africa and the Middle East make up about 16 per cent of the population but take as much as 58 per cent of welfare payments, representing a large wealth transfer from the native population.[xxx] That transfer cannot be seen as a good investment because about 48 per cent of working-age immigrants are unemployed. Even after 15 years in the country, 40 per cent are not working.

The trend is for separate and dependent Islamic societies to be established as the Muslim population segregates itself and new generations come of age. The separation is territorial and psychological.

The failure to integrate economically and culturally contributes to high levels of Muslim crime, a phenomenon experienced across Europe. In Sweden the majority of those charged with murder, rape and robbery are immigrants, despite immigrants – largely Muslims – numbering only 16 per cent of the population.[xxxi] In Denmark, immigrants from the Middle East and Africa commit crimes at a much higher rate than do ethnic Danes. The greatest frequency of law-breaking was shown by the children of non-Western immigrants.[xxxii]

Sweden is suffering an epidemic of rape of native Swedes by Muslim men. A 2005 government report states that immigrants, mostly Muslims, were five times more likely to be investigated for sex crimes, and four times more likely for homicide, than native Swedes.[xxxiii] In addition there are over 50 “no-go” immigrant neighbourhoods in which police are reluctant to go except in force, because they are at risk of mob attack. Whites are fleeing Muslim areas and trust is declining.[xxxiv]

Immigrant crime often emerges in the second generation. This is also the experience of the United States, that immigrants are generally more law-abiding than their children.[xxxv]

To these patterns should be added the extraordinary levels of criminality shown by some Islamic immigrant communities in Britain and France, the two ex-colonial powers with the longest experience of these minorities. There are no-go areas in northern Paris, Marseille and other French urban areas, where even police dare not venture except in force. (The same applies to Brussels.) In France and Britain there are occasional riots so violent and extensive that police lose control of affected areas. These amount to uprisings, periods of mass conflict, which would edge closer to civil war if the indigenous population fought back to protect their shops, cars and other property.

In France Muslim-African youth rioted in 2005 burning an estimated 9,000 cars in 274 cities and towns. The situation was out of control for three weeks. A state of emergency was declared. There were two deaths, almost 3,000 arrests and 1,256 injured police and fire-fighters.

Large scale organised sexual exploitation of white girls, predominantly by Muslim Pakistani men, took place in the English town of Rotherham in South Yorkshire. Up to 1,400 girls as young as 12 were raped and sex-trafficked by multiple men between 1997 and 2013. About 100 have given birth to children fathered by the rapists. The rapes point to the wider phenomenon of uncompetitive ethnic minorities becoming alienated and exhibiting contempt for the Europeans among whom they live. These men did not prey on Pakistani girls, so it was an ethnically-directed crime. Well after the case was revealed, Rotherham’s Member of Parliament, Sarah Champion, continued to receive complaints from girls all over England. She suggested that sexual exploitation of indigenous girls by Pakistani men is a national problem, affecting many thousands of victims.[xxxvi]

Muslim populations in Europe, where the data are most complete, are economically uncompetitive, over-represented among the unemployed and welfare-dependent, and over-represented as perpetrators of a range of crime.

This dire situation is not necessarily predictive of Muslims in Australia. As noted above, social impacts in Europe vary between countries due to the prevailing welfare system, investment in integrating immigrants, and particular histories of immigration. It is conceivable that Australia has hit upon a formula that closes the gap between Muslims and non-Muslims. That is made more likely by Australia’s policy of selecting immigrants by economic criteria, compared to Europe’s more haphazard emphasis on refugee and family reunion intakes. On the other hand, Australia’s large refugee intake, with a significant Muslim component, bypasses economic criteria.

Despite some differences, the experience of other Western societies warrants the hypothesis that a similar pattern of Muslim behaviour and social impacts will be shown in Australia.

2.3  Hypotheses: the social impact of Muslims in Australian neighbourhoods.

This study adopts a hypothesis-testing format that is common in science. This facilitates transparency of analysis, allowing theories and methods to be tested against results.

Two hypotheses are suggested by the biosocial theory and international trends discussed above. (1) Australia is no exception to international experience. Interactions between Muslim and non-Muslim citizens cause negative social effects in line with the general social effects of ethno-religious diversity. (2) Further negative social impacts result from characteristics specific to Islamic cultures, similar in kind if not magnitude to those experienced in other Western societies.

The hypotheses, if confirmed, have obvious implications for the social impact of Muslim houses of worship, mosques. If verified, the two set of effects combined would make Muslims a special case in Australia, as they are internationally. Mosques would be associated with the same negative social impacts as Muslims because: (1) they are built and used by Muslim communities; (2) they can attract more worshippers to their vicinity; and (3) mosques slow the loss of religious and ethnic identities over time by facilitating in-marriage (endogamy) and the transmission of religious and cultural traditions.


  1. The social impact of diversity in Australia


3.1  General analyses

This section examines the social impact of the country’s diverse mix of ethno-religious populations, of which Muslims are a part. The section relies on studies that do not distinguish the impacts of different ethno-religious groups, but detect the effect of mixing peoples of different cultures and religions.

Studies of the social effects of ethno-religious diversity in Australia are in line with the international research reviewed in Section 2 above. They can be briefly summarised.

Repeated studies by Australian academics find that ethno-religious diversity undermines social capital, consisting of trust, participation in group events, and volunteering for charitable activities. A negative correlation between diversity and trust was found by Andrew Leigh when he was professor of economics at the Australian National University, in 2006.[xxxvii] A similar finding for volunteering was found by Ernest Healy, a demographer at Monash University. Both confirmed Putnam’s study reviewed in the previous section.[xxxviii]

The Australian Bureau of statistics has also found that diversity undermines social cohesion. The ABS’s General Social Survey measures the wellbeing of individuals and communities, partly by collecting information on social capital. The Survey introduction explains that:

Social capital is conceived as a resource available to individuals and communities, and founded on networks of mutual support, reciprocity and trust. Research links strong social capital to increased individual and community wellbeing. It includes elements such as community support, social participation, civic participation, network size, trust and trustworthiness, and an ability to have a level of control of issues important to them.[xxxix]

Volunteering is one measure of social capital. The rate in capital cities in 2014 was 30 per cent, outside capital cities it was 34 per cent.[xl] Migrants volunteer less than the native born. Recent migrants who speak English well or very well showed 21.5 per cent volunteering, 36 per cent below the average of native-born, of 33.6 per cent. Recent migrants who only spoke English, i.e. from English-speaking countries, were only slightly below the native rate, at 29.6 per cent. This difference is compatible with ethno-religious diversity accounting for the lower rate.

The difference persisted for longer-term immigrants. Of those who developed strong English skills, 26.7 per cent volunteered, still 21 per cent below the native born. Of those from English-speaking societies 30.3 per cent volunteered, just 10 per cent below the native born.

Ethnic diversity of local communities was also indirectly implicated in the decline of volunteering. In the major cities, which are more diverse than the regions, 29.7 per cent of people volunteered. In the inner regional communities, which are less diverse, 33.4 per cent volunteered. And in the outer regional areas which, except for areas with significant indigenous populations, are generally the least diverse, 38.6 per cent volunteered. This is 14.9 per cent higher than the mean level of the native born, and 80 per cent above immigrants with good English.

The weakness of these ABS data is that the regions they compare are too broad. The Scanlon Institute data presented in the next section overcome that deficiency.

3.2  The Scanlon local area surveys

Large scale surveys measuring social cohesion have been carried out since 2007 by Professor Andrew Markus, at Monash University, on behalf of the Scanlon Foundation, in association with the Australian Multicultural Foundation. This section reviews the Scanlon survey results.

The Scanlon data are doubly useful because they come from an individual and organisation committed to multiculturalism and the high levels of ethnically non-selected immigration that feed it.[xli] Markus has been critiquing immigration restriction, at least in Australia and the United States, since his doctoral dissertation, published in 1979.[xlii] He has a long history of criticising Western ethnocentrism and intolerance, always championing minority perspectives. He supports the UN-sponsored Racial Discrimination Act 1975 and its racial vilification amendment, including the controversial section 18C. He writes sympathetically about Al Grassby,[xliii] the first commissioner under the RDA. Markus defines intolerance as a characteristic unique to the Australian majority. In the 2014 Scanlon Report, he wrote:

The intolerant are characterised by unease when in the presence of members of minority groups, their belief that multiculturalism does not enrich Australia, their demand that immigrants should assimilate to what they see as the Australian way of life (or go back to their countries of origin) . . .

This prejudicial assumption that intolerance is expressed only towards minorities and not also by them has been typical of the multicultural establishment from its beginnings. However, this gives the Scanlon data an added plausibility when reporting data that reflect badly on minorities. As shall now be reviewed, those data show that residential areas of high immigration settlement suffer significant losses of social trust, sense of belonging, feelings of safety and other measures of social cohesion. As Markus concludes, “[t]his finding supports Putnam’s interpretation that ethnic diversity has a significant negative impact on social cohesion.” [xliv]

The Scanlon Foundation data reveal disturbing declines in social cohesion in neighbourhoods of heavy migrant settlement, compared to the national averages. (In the Scanlon reports ‘social cohesion’ to mean ‘social capital’.) This section summarises what they reveal about social impacts flowing from diversity alone. Following is a review of pertinent findings about ethno-religious diversity and social cohesion at the national and local levels.

The Scanlon Foundation surveys are unique in combining national and area data-gathering. A smaller number of local area studies have been undertaken, each one accounting for about 20 per cent of the most diverse suburbs.[xlv] Areas are chosen with similar socio-economic profiles, to allow identification of cultural effects. Four local area studies have been published, as shown in Table 1.

Table 1.  The Scanlon Foundation local area surveys, years and areas.

Year Areas
2007[xlvi] Hume (VIC)

Dandenong (VIC)

Fairfield (NSW)

Auburn (NSW)

Stretton-Karawatha (QLD)

Calamvale (QLD)

2009[xlvii] Engadine (NSW) ESB

Fairfield (NSW) NESB

Bankstown (NSW) NESB

Sunbury (VIC) ESB


Greater Dandenong (VIC) NESB

2012 Noble Park (VIC)

Springvale (VIC)

Coolaroo/Meadow Heights (VIC)

Broadmeadows/Dallas/Jacana (VIC)

Bankstown (NSW)

Greenacre/Chullora/Mt Lewis (NSW)

Cabramatta/Canley Vale (NSW)

2013 Logan (QLD)

Mirrabooka (WA-Perth)

Murray Bridge (regional SA)

Shepparton (regional VIC)

Atherton (regional QLD)


3.3  2007 Scanlon area study

The first Scanlon survey found that areas of heavy immigrant settlement showed some worse scores on social cohesion variables compared to national averages. One category to watch closely is long-time Australians, respondents born in Australia with both parents also born in Australia. Impacts on long-time Australians are important, because they are the majority of the population. Many of the differences between local and national scores involved social cohesion variables, as shown by selected replies in Table 2.

Table 2.  Social cohesion of long-time Australians nationally and in areas of heavy immigrant settlement, 2007 (from 2007 Scanlon Area Study, Table 9.5).[xlviii]

Question National Local % diff.
Happiness over the last year – happy 89.5 89.9 0.4
Pride in the Australian way of life – great 61.4 60.9 – 0.8
Sense of belonging in Australia – great 84.6 85.3 0.8
Australia is a land of economic opportunity – agree 80.3 78.5 – 2.3
Present financial situation – satisfied 76.2 74.2 – 2.7
Immigrants from diverse sources make Australia stronger – agree 64.4 59.4 – 8.4
Undertake voluntary work 33.9 29.1 – 16.5
Most people can be trusted 55.6 45.8 – 21.4
Government assistance for maintenance of customs and traditions – agree 26.2 20.5 – 27.8
Experienced discrimination last year 7.8 10.1 29.5
Number of immigrants – too high 38.8 51.3 32.2
Number of respondents 1063 307


The highlighted variables show the greatest difference between long-time Australians in suburbs of high ethno-religious diversity and nationally. The results reveal a decline in support for cultural diversity, in volunteering, in trust, in support for government sponsorship of multiculturalism, and in support for the existing level of immigration. They show a large rise in the experience of discrimination (evidence of ethnic conflict). The elevated rate of negative views about immigration is doubly significant, because the data were collected towards the end of the Howard Coalition government, whose strong border-control policies had bolstered support for legal immigration.

This set of results indicate that in immigrant concentration areas, social cohesion declined for long-time Australians and conflict increased.

3.4  2009 Scanlon area study

The 2009 Scanlon survey showed greater declines in social cohesion scores on the part of long-time Australians in ethno-religiously diverse suburbs. The largest declines, highlighted in Table 3, compared to the national average among long-time Australians, were in the belief that immigrants from diverse backgrounds make Australia stronger (16% lower), trust in the local council (22% lower), influence over the local council (26% lower), support for the current level of immigration (42% lower), belief that locals are willing to help neighbours (23% lower), the belief that most people can be trusted (36% lower), fear of crime (27% lower), and feeling safe walking alone at night (55% lower). There was a collapse in support for immigration and feelings of trust and safety in the neighbourhood, a trend confirmed in the 2012 survey, reviewed below.

Table 3.  Social cohesion of long-time Australians nationally and in areas of heavy immigrant settlement, 2009 (2009 Scanlon Area Study summary, Table 12).[xlix].

Question National Local % diff.
Happiness over the last year – very happy + happy 90% 84% – 6.7
Present financial situation – very satisfied + satisfied 74% 67% – 9.5
Impact of immigration in local area – very positive + positive 44% 40% – 9.1
People of different national + ethnic backgrounds get on well in the local area – strongly agree + agree  





– 12

Immigrants from diverse sources make Australia stronger – strongly agree + agree  





– 16

Trust local council to do what is right for the people in the area – almost always + most of the time  





– 22

Agree or disagree that you can influence local council decisions? – strongly agree and agree  





– 26

Current immigration intake is about right or too low 50% 29% – 42
Local area: people willing to help their neighbours – strongly agree + agree  





– 23

Most people can be trusted 55% 35% – 36
How worried are you about becoming a victim of crime in your local area? – not worried, not at all worried  





– 27

Safe walking alone at night – very safe + fairly safe 62% 28% – 55
Number of respondents 1107 292


Note that the un-highlighted results also show a downward trend of social cohesion. Long-time Australians living in suburbs with many immigrants were less happy, less positive about the local impact of immigration, and thought that local people of different background were less harmonious, compared to long-time Australians nationally.


3.5  2012 Scanlon area study

Data from third generation Australians are recorded. These indicate a collapse in social cohesion among third generation (“long time” in the previous survey) Australians in heavily migrant suburbs, as shown in Table 4.[l]

Table 4.  Social cohesion of third-generation Australians and NESB respondents nationally and in areas of heavy immigrant settlement, 2012 (2012 Scanlon Local Area Study, Table 32).[li]

Question National % Local % % Increase
“How worried are you about becoming a victim of crime in your local area?” Response: “very” and “fairly worried” 22.6 44.7 97
“. . . living in local area is becoming . . .” Response: “worse” and “much worse” 17.0 34.8 105
“People in my local area are willing to help their neighbours”  Response: “disagree” and “strongly disagree” 8.6 35.5 313
“My local area is a place where people from different national or ethnic backgrounds get on well together?” Response: “disagree” and “strongly disagree” 9.5 26.5 179
“What has been the impact of immigration on daily life in your local area?” Response: “somewhat negative” and “very negative” 10.3 33.4 224
Asylum seekers – turn back boats or detain and deport 35.7 53.5 50

(The number of respondents was not provided for this table.)


While the 2012 Scanlon Local Area report documented the decline in social cohesion, its interpretive passages sought to minimise the seriousness of these data in three ways. First, it stated that discontent was shown by a “minority” without noting that it was a large minority. The negative views came from 27-45 per cent of third generation respondents. Secondly, it noted that disaffection had only increased by 2 per cent between 2009 and 2012. In fact this is a substantial increase in only three years, from an already high base level.

What sort of diversity produced the collapse in long time Australian social cohesion? Following are some of the characteristics of the local areas surveyed by the Scanlon Foundation for the 2012 report.

Four suburbs in Victoria and three in NSW were surveyed in the 2012 Scanlon Local Area Report. A minimum of 500 interviews were conducted in each local government area, for a total of 2,006 interviews (p. 1) (Table 5).



Table 5.  Selected demographic characteristics of local areas surveyed, 2012 (2012 Scanlon Local Area Study, Table 3).[lii]

Suburb(s) Noble Park





Meadow Heights, VIC



Jacana, VIC





Mt Lewis, NSW


Canley Vale, NSW

Population 35,768 19,771 18,107 19,001 40,612 24,709 49,724
Both parents born overseas 76% 88% 74% 69% 81% 74% 89%
English only spoken at home 38% 21% 28% 32% 20% 25% 17%
Buddhist 15% 27% 3% 2% 11% 3% 44%
Muslim 8% 5% 39% 33% 25% 38% 2%


Unfortunately, social cohesion responses were not reported for these seven suburbs with known demography but for the four local government areas to which they belonged. These are shown in Table 6, with corresponding suburbs and LGAs, together with the percentage of Buddhists and Muslims in each LGA and the social cohesion index results, from Table 5.

Table 6.  Local government areas, ethnic proportions, and social cohesion indexes, 2012 (2012 Scanlon Local Area Study, based on Tables 3, 6[ii]).[liii]

LGA Hume (Melbourne) Bankstown






Suburbs Broadmeadows




Mt Lewis


Noble Park


Canley Vale

% Buddhist 2.0 7.0 21.0 44.0
% Muslim 33.0 31.5 6.5 2.0
SMI 79.6 83.9 85.5 82.9


The national social cohesion index (SMI) for 2012 was 94.4, significantly higher than the results for the migrant suburb, shown in Table 6. The Report attributed the lower score in migrant-heavy neighbourhoods to ethno-religious diversity, which consisted largely of Muslims and Buddhists. What is not directly revealed is any differential impact of Muslims compared to Buddhists.

The Report distinguished third generation Australians (“3GenAu”) from non-English speaking background Australians (NESB). The Report emphasised the socio-economic status of local areas, adopting the 10-rank typology used by the Australian Bureau of Statistics. The Socio-Economic Index for Areas designates its poorest category as SEIFA 1, and its wealthiest as SEIFA 10. The 2012 Survey found that, controlling for SEIFA rank, local areas with high ethnic diversity had low trust. For SEIFA 1 areas nationally, 53% responded positively to the question “most people can be trusted”. But in the five local areas surveyed, only 30 per cent responded positively, a 43 per cent decline. For the broader SEIFA 1-3 category, the national and local positive response rates were 48 per cent and 32 per cent respectively.[liv] That is a 33 per cent reduction due to ethno-religious diversity. Markus notes that this is in line with Harvard Political Scientist Robert Putnam’s finding that in the US ethnic diversity undermines social cohesion:

This finding supports Putnam’s interpretation that ethnic diversity has a significant negative impact on social cohesion.[lv]

3.6  2013 Scanlon area study

The 2013 Report’s section on demography and population for five local areas provided data on source countries of recent immigrants but data were not provided on religious affiliation. However, the five areas fell into two types, Logan and Mirraboola of high immigrant population, the other three relatively low. This is set out in Table 7, based on the 2013 Report’s Figure 8, p. 14.

Table 7.  Demographics of five local areas of heavy immigrant settlement, 2013 (from 2013 Scanlon Local Area Report, pp. 14-16).[lvi]

Area % born in Australia Source countries of recent immigrants Refugee & huma-nitarian intake since 2000 % non-Christian religion % Indigenous Implied Muslim population
Logan 56 NZ, Samoa, fewer in Asia, Africa, Middle East 2,295 8 5 Highest
Mirraboola 48 Asia, Africa and the Middle East 3,160 16 3.3 Highest
Murray Bridge 81 South Asia, South-East Asia, China < 200 2 5.3 Low
Shepparton 76 India, Afghanistan, Iraq, NZ 1,090 11 3.7 Moderate
Atherton Tablelands 80 Very few recent arrivals (< 3%) < 10 3 12.2 Low


The 2013 Report asked six questions concerning social cohesion in local neighbourhoods. Replies are provided in Table 8.

Table 8.  Social cohesion indicators (%), 2013 (from 2013 Scanlon Local Areas Report, Table 23, p. 31). Scores indicating low social cohesion are in bold.

Neighbourhood Scale Item National Shepparton Murray Bridge Atherton Tablelands Mirrabooka Logan
Living in my local area is getting worse 36 16 17 22 35
People willing to help neighbours – disagree 12 16 21 10 32 28
People of different national/ethnic backgrounds get on well – disagree 11 22 21 12 25 39
Not able to have a say on issues that are important to me in my local area 29 28 28 32 37
Unsafe walking alone at night/do not walk at night 34 63 55 41 67 68
Worried about becoming a victim of crime 26 47 46 30 54 54


These results showed the previous pattern of declines, compared to the national sample or less diverse local areas, in confidence that diverse groups can get along, in feeling safe, and worry about becoming a victim of crime. Other measures of social cohesion were also lower: confidence in neighbourly help, having a say on local issues, and living condition becoming worse.

There was much less difference between national and local results on ideological issues, such as whether multiculturalism or diverse sources of immigration were good for the country. It was questions about local personal experiences that elicited a fall in social cohesion scores, immune from the pro-immigration and pro-multicultural messages received from the mainstream media and educational establishments. The Report noted something of the ephemeral nature of ideological multiculturalism compared to personal experience: “The highest level of support [for multiculturalism] is obtained for general propositions, lower levels of support when the question is specific.”[lvii] Looking back at previous surveys of local areas confirmed the ephemeral nature of broad questions about social cohesion:

[L]ocal area surveys were conducted in 2007, 2009 and 2012 in areas of immigrant concentration, where historical evidence indicates that the potential of social tension is higher. Social cohesion operates not in the abstract, the realm of the ‘nation’, but at the community level, where people of different backgrounds and cultures make their lives.[lviii]

Long-time Australians were analysed at some length in the 2007 report, but treated sparingly in the report of 2013. This study also watered down the category, from both parents born in Australia, to one. Respondents born in Australia showed a slightly more negative attitude towards asylum seekers, especially in Logan and Mirrabooka, the two areas with large numbers of immigrants (Table 29, p. 37). The failure to distinguish responses from long-time Australians reduced the value of some data. For example, the 2013 Scanlon Report provided raw data on negative attitudes towards immigration and cultural diversity.[lix] Atherton Tablelands showed a higher frequency of negative replies than any other area, including the two areas of heavy immigrant settlement. But the data did not explain how the large indigenous population in Atherton (12.2%) contributed to this result. Neither did the data reveal whether the immigrants agreed with these negative responses, which would have greatly reduced the negative score considering that 44 per cent and 52 per cent of the populations of Mirrabooka and Logan were born overseas. It is possible that long-time Australians in these areas were much more negative than those in Atherton.

There has been a general decline in the overall Scanlon index of social cohesion since it began in 2007, corresponding to the rise in ethno-cultural diversity. The index fell 10 points between 2007 and 2014. Consistent with this decline, fewer Australians indicated a sense of belonging (77% in 2007 to 66% in 2014).[lx] Trust in the federal government has also declined.

The research reviewed in this section strongly confirms the hypothesised correlation between ethno-religious diversity and negative social impacts in the form of social capital, also referred to as social cohesion. The studies were conducted from 2006 to 2013. They all indicate that diversity undercuts feelings of trust and safety, confidence in harmony, the quality of life, support for immigration, and acceptance of refugees. Interestingly, support for mainstream ideology such as multiculturalism is not greatly affected.

The evidence reviewed so far does not distinguish the impact of ethno-religious groups. The next section tests the hypothesis that Muslims have exerted negative social impacts beyond their contribution to ethno-cultural diversity.


  1. The social impact of Muslims I: Statistical evidence


4.1  Scanlon Social Cohesion Surveys

Muslims receive less intense and regular treatment in the Scanlon surveys than the general impact of diversity. The word ‘Muslim’ does not appear in the 2009 Report. Nevertheless, a search of the surveys reveals useful results. This includes comparative data strongly indicating that Muslims have negative social impacts well beyond that produced by ethno-cultural diversity. This section begins by reviewing those data before reporting other relevant findings from the Scanlon reports.

The 2014 Scanlon area study asked respondents to express personal attitudes towards two non-Christian religious groups, Muslims and Buddhists. Eleven per cent were strongly negative towards Muslims, but only 2 per cent towards Buddhists (p. 59). The asymmetry in attitudes towards Buddhists and Muslims has continued since 2010 when the Scanlon surveys first included these questions. The 2014 Survey also found that 5 per cent or fewer respondents expressed ‘very negative’ or ‘negative’ views towards Buddhists or Christians. But almost five times that number, 25 per cent, expressed those views towards Muslims.[lxi] The contrast was striking even among the 37 per cent of respondents who strongly endorsed multiculturalism. Supporters of multiculturalism are generally positive towards minorities, and only a small minority (2 per cent) were negative towards Buddhists. But nine times that number, 18 per cent, were negative towards Muslims. And while 58 per cent were positive towards Buddhists, only 41 per cent expressed view of Muslims. Among the 48 per cent who moderately endorsed multiculturalism, only 23 per cent were positive towards Muslims, but 43 per cent towards Buddhists.[lxii]

The 2014 Scanlon area study suggests that the preceding negative percentages might understate the opposition to Muslims, due to people avoiding expressing opinions they consider “socially undesirable”, i.e. which threaten their reputations. This effect appears to be reduced when the survey is self-administered online and not by an interviewer. In 2014 a Scanlon study found that a self-administered survey yielded 23 per cent strongly negative towards Muslims, double that yielded by the same survey administered by an interviewer (11%).[lxiii] Overall negative attitude towards Muslims was expressed by 44 per cent of online respondents.[lxiv] Even the interviewer-conducted survey found that 23 per cent of respondents with trade or apprentice qualifications admitted to very negative attitude towards Muslims, but only 2 per cent against Christians.[lxv]

The 2015 Scanlon survey confirmed the 2014 results. Regarding attitudes to Muslims, in mid 2015, 11 per cent of respondents expressed strong disapproval of Muslims, and 10 per cent strong approval.[lxvi] Young-adult and middle-aged respondents felt most favourably towards Muslims, but even their approval was low, at 29-31 per cent. Only 23 per cent of older respondents had a favourable view.[lxvii]

Attitude towards Muslims was less favourable in regional Australia than in the capital cities. But even in the latter, only 11.2 per cent expressed a very positive attitude, falling to 7.9 per cent in the regions. Those responding “somewhat positive” in their attitude to Muslims were 22 per cent in the capital cities, 18 per cent in the regions.[lxviii] This is consistent with the low level of strong support (“very positive”) for Muslims in “rest of state” (i.e. outside the capital cities) in Western Australia (6%), South Australia (4%) and Queensland (7%).[lxix]

The Scanlon surveys offer further comparative data that, while not as decisive in distinguishing Muslim impacts, confirms the earlier results and adds detail.

The 2007 Scanlon area survey found that the strongest opposition to immigration was directed at intakes from the Middle East and Muslim countries (17% of the sample; 13% opposed immigration from Asia). (p. 62) The 2012 area survey found that fewer Muslims than Christians felt a great sense of belonging to Australia (51% versus 69%). Only 41 per cent of Buddhists expressed great belonging. (p. 15).

Discrimination also fitted the pattern of greater Muslim social impact. The 2007 Scanlon Report found that 27.5 per cent of respondents of Middle Eastern background reported suffering discrimination on the basis of religion, compared to under 10 per cent for other religions. (p. xiii) The 2012 Scanlon National Survey[lxx] found that 31.3 per cent of Muslims reported discrimination, the highest rate reported. The next highest was Christians (17.7%) and Buddhists (13.8%). Interestingly, discrimination by region or country of birth gave generally lower results. The combined discrimination responses in Scanlon surveys from 2007 to 2012 were: Africa and Middle East (20.9%); Asia (20.1%); New Zealand (15.1%); Australia (10.4%); UK (7.6%) and Europe (7.0%).

These comparisons indicate that both religious and ethnic differences play a role in eliciting inter-group conflict, but that the religion of Islam stands out in this regard.

Volunteering also fitted the pattern of Muslims exerting greater social impact. Not only did volunteering decline in areas of heavy immigrant settlement, but in the 2007 Scanlon survey, individuals of Middle Eastern background had the lowest level of volunteering, at 12.4 per cent. The national average was 30-34 per cent.[lxxi]

Weaker, but still suggestive, data come from association of low social cohesion in local areas with concentrations of Muslims. In the 2012 Scanlon Local Area Study, the average social cohesion index for high-Muslim areas was 81.75, the average for the high Buddhist areas was 84.2. This is not a large difference but is consistent with the hypothesised greater negative social impact of Muslims.

The 2013 Scanlon area survey did not ask the national sample a question about attitude to Muslims. (Table 26, p. 34). The results, however, are compatible with the hypothesis that social cohesion declines when the proportion of Muslims in an area is high. Table 7, presented in the previous section, indicated that the most diverse areas of Mirrabooka and Logan – with the greatest proportion of Muslims – expressed the greatest negative responses to social cohesion questions, including questions related to personal safety, fear of being a victim of crime, helpfulness of neighbours, cooperation between ethnic groups, and the quality of life in the area (Figure 20, p. 32). Fitting this trend was volunteering, a measure of social capital, which was significantly lower in the two areas of immigrant concentration. Whereas nationally 35.6 per cent volunteered monthly, in Mirrabooka it was only 21.6 per cent and in Logan 22.1 per cent. In the three relatively homogeneous areas, the rates of volunteering were at or above the national average.[lxxii]

Recall the Scanlon survey finding that support for multiculturalism and immigration depended on the way questions were phrased. “The analysis demonstrates that there is no simple or definitive determination of the balance of Australian opinion: answers are dependent on specific questions and approach to analysis.”[lxxiii] The remainder of this section discusses two surveys that asked different questions about Islam and Muslims but received a similar pattern of answers.

4.2  Australian attitudes to Islam poll, 2013

A Roy Morgan poll asked 18,048 Australians about their attitudes to Islam.[lxxiv] The poll, published in October 2013, was commissioned by the Q Society, which is critical of Islamist influence in Australia. The sample was spread across city and regions in all states. The poll was conducted before the first terrorist attacks on Australian soil and before the major attacks in Europe. Table 9 shows the replies to seven propositions.

Table 9.  Roy Morgan poll, 2013: Australian attitudes to Islam poll.[lxxv]

Question Agree Disagree Can’t say
1. Christmas, Easter and ANZAC Day should no longer be celebrated 1.7% 96.5% 1.8%
2. Feeling about increase in number of Australians who follow Islam / came from Islamic countries 40.8% 38.4% 20.8%
3. Whether Australia should introduce laws that ban wearing clothing in public that fully covers the face, like the Islamic burqa 53.4% 42.6% 4.0%
4. Views on the relationship between Islam and terrorist acts Strong, direct: 44.0% Weak, indirect: 34.2%  


5. The Australian Government should ban Sharia – the religious law of Islam 50.2% 36.2% 13.6%
6. I am concerned about Islam in the world today 57.3% 40.1% 2.6%
7. Australia is becoming a better place as a result of Islam 16.4% 70.6% 13.0%

The poll confirms Scanlon surveys’ finding of substantial disapproval of Muslims. Perhaps the cause is that the Scanlon survey asked for general evaluations while the Q Society poll asked specific policy questions. Andrew Markus, who manages the Scanlon Survey, noted that the two types of responses were elicited by ideological and concrete questions based on personal experience of local affairs.

4.3  Progress Institute survey, 2015

In 2015 a think tank, the Australian Institute for Progress (AIP), published a qualitative survey of 1,349 respondents that found rising public opposition to legal immigration of Muslims. The survey was conducted by Graham Young, who pioneered polling via the internet in Australia.

The results of the survey indicate a negative response to Muslims well above the level generated by ethno-religious diversity alone. Only 8 per cent of citizens thought that Muslim immigration has been good for Australia. Forty eight percent thought it has been bad for Australia.[lxxvi] These views appeared not to be based on rejection of immigration because 69 per cent of respondents favoured immigration at or above the present level, with only 27 per cent opposed.

Respondents who opposed Muslim immigration expressed a range of concerns. Some were critical of Islam as a religion, others were critical of the non-religious culture of Muslims, accusing it of being incompatible with Western culture. Muslims’ religion or non-religious culture was thought to impede assimilation into Australian society.[lxxvii] Respondents believed that earlier waves of immigrants had cultures more similar to the Australian mainstream. The strongest critics of Muslim immigration felt that Australia is being colonised by Islam and felt that sharia law poses a threat. Concern about human rights was also raised as an objection to Islam and Muslims’ secular culture. These respondents perceived Muslim immigrants as misogynistic and homophobic. The hijab was seen as a violation of women’s human rights. Other frequently voiced concerns about human rights concerned female genital mutilation and Islamic discrimination against other religions.

The AIP study did not directly test Muslims’ impact on community identity, social cohesion or sense of wellbeing, though negative impacts can be inferred from the results. A different survey by social research company I-view, measured the public’s sense of risk and safety due to overseas events. Based on a sample of 1200 adults in February and March 2015, the survey found that 53 per cent saw domestic terrorism as a high risk over the next 10 years, and only 24 per cent said they felt “very safe”, a sharp fall from the 42 per cent who gave that response in 2010.[lxxviii]

These further surveys confirm and extend the Scanlon survey findings of negative social impact of Muslims on local neighbourhoods in which they reside. A methodological weakness remains with the survey data presented above. It is possible that anti-Muslim sentiment is induced by media and government bias, as alleged by Dunn, Klocker and Salabay.[lxxix] The next sections eliminate that possibility by showing that Muslims are greatly over-represented in crime and unemployment and under-represented in volunteering for the Australian Armed Forces. These patterns of behaviour are congruent with the negative social impacts described in the reviewed survey data. These findings indicate that Muslim behaviour, not media and government messages alone, have caused anti-Muslim sentiment.

4.4  Muslims and crime

The Australian Bureau of Statistics does not provide data on the religion of prisoners, only giving country of birth. This is not useful for discerning ethno-religious patterns because large numbers of many faiths are born in Australia. Data are hard to obtain in Australia compared to other countries, according to academic Clarke Jones. In 2015 Jones was a visiting fellow at the Australian National University. He worked previously in counterterrorism for the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade. “[I]t is much easier to get these statistics overseas. In Australia, it is getting into politically sensitive areas.”[lxxx] The same can be true of state police departments when they hide or neglect to gather information about the ethnicity of suspects and those arrested and charged. One investigative journalist also encountered dead ends when investigating ethnic crime. “There is a lack of statistical data, and expert opinions differ on whether ethnic crime is a genuine problem or a reflection of public hysteria and media hype. . . . Pinpointing the precise nature and extent of ethnically based crime is difficult because of a dearth of data on the problem. The NSW Police and the state’s Bureau of Crime Statistics and Research do not collect figures on ethnicity, and nor does the Australian Institute of Criminology.”[lxxxi]

In 2015 however investigative journalists Chip le Grand and Dan Box tracked down some data on Muslim imprisonment rates in three states, shown in Table 10. Muslim prisoners are over-represented compared to their proportion of the larger society. The more moderate over-representation in Queensland – about double instead of almost triple in NSW and Victoria – could be due to educational and cultural factors. Queensland Muslims are largely educated professionals of Indian and South African heritage, while Muslims in NSW and Victoria are less educated and originate in the Middle East and Africa.

Table 10. Muslim prisoners and population by state, 2015[lxxxii]

State Population (mill.) % Muslim pop. % Muslim prisoners
Queensland 4.3 0.8 1.5
NSW 6.9 3.2 9.0*
Victoria 5.4 2.9 8.0*

* Based on data accurate to one significant figure.

Most Muslim prisoners in Australian jails are ordinary criminals, not imprisoned for terrorism-related offences. The crimes committed include violent and sexual offences.[lxxxiii] Very few are converts to Islam, meaning that they are of Islamic immigrant background. Muslims are also over-represented in British jails. In mid 2015 Muslims were 4.7 per cent of the England and Wales but 14 per cent of the prison population, three times their proportion of the general population.[lxxxiv]

As 78 per cent of Australian Muslims live in NSW and Victoria, the higher imprisonment and thus criminality rates in those states are close to the national average, of almost three times their proportion of all offenders, similar to that in Britain.

Some Muslim over-representation in crime is not due to ethno-religious factors. Age distribution plays a part. Muslim-Australians are a relatively young population, and young adults of all ethnicities commit more crime. However, the age difference is not great enough to account for the dramatic difference in crime rates. In 2011, 38.1 per cent of Muslims were aged 15-35, compared to 27.1 per cent of all Australians.[lxxxv] That 40 per cent higher proportion of young Muslims does not account for their almost 200 per cent higher criminality, as revealed by the imprisonment statistics.

The Muslim community’s younger age profile is not only due to recent immigration, but also to a higher birth rate. In 2006 Muslim women aged 40-44 had had an average of 2.9 children, compared to 2.0 for Australia as a whole. That is a 45 per cent difference. The Australian Bureau of Statistics projects a lower adjusted Muslim fertility which is 25 per cent above average. [lxxxvi] The fertility rates of immigrants usually converge on that of natives. Although fertility by religion is not available on the ABS website, Australian women born in the Middle East and North Africa showed a total fertility of 2.83 in 2014, a slight decrease since 2006.[lxxxvii] In Europe Muslim fertility was lower in 2010, at 2.1 children per woman. But the non-Muslim rate was 1.6, putting Muslims 31 per cent ahead of indigenous Europeans.[lxxxviii] The Muslim rate is projected to remain higher in Europe. The long lasting nature of the high Muslim birth rate is another reason not to discount the youth component of Muslim crime. Negative impact on local areas due to crime will remain greater than that of Christians and Buddhists partly due to higher Muslim birth rates.

Recency of arrival in Australia does not explain the high Muslim imprisonment rate, because prisoners born overseas are underrepresented compared to their proportion of the population (18% versus 33% in 2015).[lxxxix] Chinese-born immigrants show low levels of imprisonment.[xc] High rates of criminality among Muslim-Australians exacerbates their social impact on residents of suburbs with Muslim populations. These data are compatible with, indeed help explain, the survey results showing negative sentiments towards Muslims, and indicate that these sentiments are not only due to news about terrorism and media sensationalism.

4.5  Muslim unemployment and public dependency

Based on the 2006 census, Riaz Hassan of Flinders University found that fewer Muslims were fully employed than non-Muslims at all age groups until age 65. This was despite them having more education than the national average. At the peak working ages of 19 to 64, Muslims were engaged in full time employment at 16 per cent below the non-Muslim rate. They were at least twice as likely to be unemployed as non-Muslims. Moreover, the ratio of Muslim to non-Muslim unemployment increased with age, as shown in Table 11.

Table 11.  Muslim and non-Muslim unemployment, 2006.[xci]

Age range Muslims

in age group (%)


in age group (%)

Ratio of


15-18 26 14 1.9
19-24 18 9 2.0
25-44 12 5 2.4
45-64 11 4 2.75
65 and over 8 2 4.0


This trend was confirmed by Hassan in a subsequent paper based on 2011 labour force data. The Muslim and non-Muslim employment rates were 31.5 and 46.8, a deficit of 33 per cent. The Muslim and non-Muslim unemployment rates were 4.6 and 2.8 per cent, a ratio of 1.6:1.[xcii]

Partly as a result of these employment rates, in 2011, 26.9 per cent of Muslim children in Australia were living in poverty, almost twice the rate of other Australians.[xciii]

In 2011 Muslims also show much greater rates of disability and need for assistance with core activities, as shown in Table 12. This translates into higher public and private health costs.

Table 12.  Elderly Muslims and total Australians needing assistance with core activities by age group.[xciv]


Age range


% Muslims


% Total Australians

Ratio of


60-69 24.2 6.8 3.6
70-79 40.2 12.9 3.1
80-89 63.9 32.1 2.0

The extraordinary rates of disability shown by Muslim Australians, almost four times the national average for people in their sixties, remain to be explained. Questions needing to be answered include the following. Are these disabilities genuine health cases or malingering? If genuine, are they due to socio-economic insult not experienced by other groups in the same neighbourhoods and occupations? How is that possible? If endogenous, are the causes genetic, e.g. due to cousin marriages, or to some shared ancestral trauma?

The consequences for this set of economic and health characteristics is to depress Muslim children’s life prospects. Ethno-religious stratification by class is one of the most invidious divisions, contributing to inter-group hostility down the generations, especially for slow-to-intermarry groups such as Muslims. For Muslims as a whole, it lowers group status objectively and subjectively. The latter intensifies group solidarity and mobilisation, affecting criminality and risk of radicalisation for terrorism.

4.6  Military volunteering

Volunteering for military duty is a well-known indicator of national loyalty, while volunteering to fight for an enemy nation is considered an act of disloyalty. It follows that a comparison of different populations’ volunteering for the Australian Armed Forces (ADF) and opposed forces should be a good indicator of their overall attachment to Australia. In recent years some Muslim Australians have volunteered to fight for their home countries in the Middle East, including terrorist formations, most notably the Islamic State active in Syria and Iraq (or ISIS). The latter formation has committed numerous acts of terror and mass murder, leading to the displacement of millions of Syrians and Iraqis. Australia is at war with ISIS as part of the Western coalition, and ISIS has attempted to radicalise Australians and induce them to commit acts of terror within Australia.

At the end of 2015 the head of Australia’s spy agency ASIO stated that the number of Australians fighting for ISIS was about 110. By May 2016, a total of at least 50 had been killed[xcv] and as early as January 2015, 30 had returned to Australia,[xcvi] giving a total of 190 Australian citizens who have served in Islamist forces in the Middle East.[xcvii] In addition, over the twelve months to June 2015, 336 people were removed from aeroplanes about to depart Australia, on suspicion that they were on their way to fight in Syria and Iraq. In the following seven months, to January 2016, another 312 people were removed from aeroplanes about to depart for the Middle East.[xcviii]

Assuming that half of those detained at airports were jihadists, the total is about 500 volunteers or would-be volunteers for ISIS or other Islamist military formations in the last few years.

There is a long-term pattern of low Muslim recruitment to the ADF, evident by 2001, as reported by the Department of Defence.[xcix] Numbers had not risen much by 2009.[c] In 2012 the head of the Australian Army acknowledged that the imbalance continued.[ci] In March 2015 the Assistant Defence Minister, Stuart Robert, stated that there were 96 Muslims in the 57,000-strong Australian Defence Forces.[cii] By November that number had risen slightly to 102.[ciii] Accepting the last estimate, it appears that about five times the number of Australian Muslims have shown loyalty to Islamist military organisations, including known terrorist formations at war with Australia, than to the Australian nation. That asymmetry could be more extreme because the ADF recruited its 102 Muslims over many years, while most of those intending to fight for ISIS did so in the space of perhaps two years. In addition, the high casualty rate of recruits to Iraq and Syria – about one in three killed – indicates a strong level of commitment. Recruitment continued even though combat deaths were reported in the media. About 1 in 10,000 Australian Muslims have been killed fighting for Islamist forces. A comparison with ADF war casualties puts this in perspective. Australia lost 41 soldiers killed in Afghanistan over a ten year deployment. If ADF soldiers had suffered casualties in the same proportion to the Australian population as jihadists to the Muslim population, about 2,200 ADF soldiers would have been killed in action. By accepting a relatively high casualty rate, the Australian Muslim population is showing considerable war-fighting motivation in defence of their ethno-religious homelands.

Recruits to the ADF with English-speaking backgrounds offer a useful comparison. The Assistant Defence Minister, Mr. Robert, noted that 94.6 per cent of the ADF personnel have an English-speaking background. He stated that the government’s policy was to increase the ethno-religious diversity of the ADF, implying that the percentage of English-background personnel is too high. The Army, Navy and Air Force would benefit from having the language and cultural skills brought by different ethnicities. In addition, he stated the ideological view that the ADF should be a more “culturally and linguistically diverse workforce, that represents the changing face of modern Australia”.

The assistant minister missed an important point. All ADF personnel are volunteers. Signing up to defend Australia is not only as a form of employment but an expression of patriotism and social integration. It follows that the preponderance of people of English-speaking background in the ADF reflects the fact that they feel more patriotism towards Australia and have deeper roots in the nation. Very few people of English-speaking background have volunteered for ISIS. The preponderance of this culture in the ADF could be seen as a benefit, a source of cohesion, trust and fighting morale, preferable to signing up people unsure of their national identity or whose first allegiance lies elsewhere.

The reluctance of Australian Muslims to volunteer for the Australian Defence Forces is consistent with the data reviewed earlier on community hostility to Muslims in Australia, especially on the part of long-time Australians. It is consistent with the relatively low levels of charitable volunteering on the part of Middle Easterners compared to the average for native born. The 2007 Scanlon Survey found that individuals of Middle Eastern background had the lowest level of volunteering, at 12.4 per cent, about 40 per cent of the national average.[civ]

The defence analyst, Neil James, has referred to survey findings of low affinity to Australia among some immigrant groups, which indicate that they would not help defend Australia even in time of war. James notes that the armed forces’ difficulty in recruiting immigrants groups is complicated by the existence of radicalised elements of Australia’s Muslim community which would be problematic if deployed overseas in operations against Islamist terrorism.[cv] James implies that radicalised Muslims feel more loyalty to Islamist causes than to Australia.

The research reviewed in this section confirms the second hypothesis, that Muslim communities are associated with negative social impacts beyond that produced by ethno-religious diversity.

The Scanlon area surveys indicate that in areas with large Muslim populations, disapproval of Muslims is about five times the disapproval of Buddhists in areas with large Buddhist populations. This result has been repeated by every survey since 2010 when the question was first included. Even among strong supporters of multiculturalism, who generally accept minorities, in 2014 as many as 18 per cent were negative towards Muslims, but only 2 per cent towards Buddhists. The findings are replicated in patterns of reported discrimination. While Muslim ethnic groups were disapproved, the negativity towards the Islamic religion was stronger.

The Scanlon results were repeated by a Roy Morgan poll in 2013 and a Progress Institute survey in 2015, though they did not offer comparison with other religious groups.

These extensive survey results were confirmed by comparative imprisonment rates in Victoria, NSW and Queensland. Overall, Muslims are imprisoned at almost three times their proportion of the population. In addition, Muslim unemployment and public dependency rates are two to three times greater than the Australian averages. Finally, lack of affiliation with Australia is indicated by patterns of Muslim military volunteering. About five times the number of Australian Muslims have volunteered or attempted to volunteer for jihadist forces in the Middle East than are presently serving in the Australian Armed Forces. This despite a per capita casualty rate fifty times that suffered by Australian forces in Afghanistan.

These converging lines of evidence help explain the survey findings of a steep decline in social cohesion in areas with large numbers of Muslims.


  1. The social impact of Muslims II: Qualitative evidence

Police Deputy Commissioner Nick Kaldas, the senior officer responsible for diversity issues in the NSW Police Force, warned in August 2015 that terrorism was a real possibility wherever immigrant communities were drawn from conflict zones such as the Middle East, Somalia, and Afghanistan, all predominantly Islamic societies. He pointed out that the terror threat was not limited to big cities, but to emerging “Middle Eastern” communities in regional centres, such as Newcastle, Wollongong, Coffs Harbour, Wagga and Dubbo. He was especially concerned about refugees, for many years making up about 5 per cent of Australia’s migrant intake. Kaldas saw young men who had fled conflict zones such as Somalia, Afghanistan and the Middle East as especially vulnerable to being recruited by criminals and extremists. The risk posed by these Middle Eastern communities would remain for generations, Kaldas stated.[cvi]

Kaldas’s warning linked Muslims – especially young men from refugee families – to terrorism and organised crime such as criminal gangs (implied by his reference to recruitment by criminals). In fact Muslims are over-represented in domestic terrorism and criminal gangs, phenomena examined in the next two sections. The sections after that examine the related phenomenon of anti-social behaviour, which impacts local neighbourhoods, typically close to mosques. Anti-social behaviour is described from outside Muslim communities and from within. The chapter concludes by arguing that organised criminal gangs and terrorism networks resemble militias and that their fusion would constitute a threat to civil order. All of these characteristics of Australia’s Muslim population exert negative social impacts, both on local communities and the nation as a whole.

5.1  Terrorism – official assessments

Terrorism makes headlines but occurs infrequently. It is not part of the everyday firsthand experience of most Australians. However, news of terrorist attacks can cause widespread anxiety, a diffuse social impact that affects psychological wellbeing. This was shown by the survey reported in Section 4.1, in which only 24 per cent of respondents said they felt very safe, down from 42 per cent in 2010.[cvii]

Official warnings affect the public’s awareness of terrorism and provide information about the identity of terrorists, which has the potential to affect community relations and social cohesion. These warnings make it clear that most or all domestic terrorists are Muslims. Australia’s anti-terrorism agency, the National Terrorism Threat Advisory System, describes the risk of domestic terrorism as “probable”, and warns that Islamist radicalisation and recruitment of Australians is increasing.[cviii] In July 2014 the outgoing head of the Australian Security Intelligence Organisation (ASIO), David Irvine, cautioned that war-hardened jihadists returning from Syria and Iraq were likely to exacerbate the risk of domestic terrorism.[cix] By November 2015, the new ASIO head, Duncan Lewis, warned that the Islamist threat had worsened.[cx] Security services had disrupted six attempted terrorist attacks in the last twelve months. That number represented two thirds of the attempted attacks in the last fifteen years, indicating that the threat was increasing. Although he did not use the term ‘emergency’, Lewis implied that the threat was severe. Radical Islamists “want to attack us. They want to destroy us. We must be enormously resolute in the way we approach this”. Authorities were monitoring about 400 “high priority” cases. The severity of the situation was further indicated by Lewis’s statement that intelligence and security services could not guarantee Australia’s safety from another attack.

The ASIO chief made one obvious error in his public statement, which was to deny that Islam helped motivate attacks such as the mass killings in Paris in November 2015. Lewis claimed that Islam was used as a cover for criminal acts with non-religious motivations. Religious trappings were used “to provide an excuse or cover for their actions”. The absurdity of this claim is indicated by the lack of comparisons. Lewis offered no precedents for criminals sacrificing their lives to attack civilians. This denial of religious motivation echoes similar misdirections issued by political leaders in Australia and other Western societies. These misleading statements undermine public confidence in governments’ ability or willingness to protect them from Islamic terrorism.

Official warnings by intelligence and security agencies are narrow in scope, relating only to violent jihad, not to the gamut of negative social impacts reviewed in this paper. ASIO has fulfilled its mission without noticing that Australia is in the process of being transformed into a Balkanised society with declining trust and rising social conflict. Preventing those outcomes is the responsibility of political leaders, not their instruments such as the security services.

5.2  Terrorism – ethnic variation among Muslims

Some analysts of domestic Islamist terrorism attribute much of it to ethnicity. Shandon Harris-Hogan, a researcher at Monash University, found that the majority of Australian jihadist groups were kith and kin.[cxi] This is consistent with findings elsewhere in the world, where bonds of kinship and friendship are vital in risky endeavours.[cxii] And it suggests the importance of ethnicity, which is a network of families. In a 2010 study Andrew Zammit, also at Monash University, identified ethnic origin as an important variable in explaining radicalisation. Until 2010, sixty per cent of Australian jihadists were of Lebanese origin, with 55 per cent being born in Australia.[cxiii]

Despite variation in the incidence of terrorism among Muslims, all branches of the religion present a risk at some level. This becomes evident from studies of intra-Muslim ethnic interactions concerning Islamist radicalism, and the existence and recent increase in jihadism among South East Asian Muslims, once thought to be peaceful.

The ethnic fractionalisation of Muslims is the subject of research conducted jointly by Australia’s Lowy Institute for International Policy[cxiv] and Indonesia’s Institute for Political Analysis of Conflict. [cxv] The study tracked ideological change in Muslim students from Indonesia as they studied in Egypt and Turkey. Face-to-face interviews were conducted with 47 students. Anthony Bubalo,[cxvi] Deputy Director of the Lowy Institute, summarised the findings.

The study found that Indonesian students differed from their Arabic and Turkish colleagues in retaining more moderate and less militant views. Although the Indonesian students in Egypt and Turkey were religious Muslims, they did not sympathise with the Muslim Brotherhood government, which had been overthrown by the Egyptian military recently in 2013. The interviewers discovered that the reason for this lack of sympathy was ethnic stereotyping. Many of the students stated that “unruly Arabs” need a strong leader. Among the students there was a strong sense of cultural differences between them and Turks and Egyptians. An example was the opinion expressed that a democratic transition failed in Egypt but succeeded in Indonesia because the latter, easterners, are different. The view was expressed that Indonesians could tolerate diversity of cultures, but Turks sought to crush difference. None of the students supported the Islamic State, though one fifth saw the United States as an enemy. The researchers concluded that Islam carries much diversity, and that not all cultures and nationalities within Islam are equally prone to commit terrorism. Some Indonesian Muslims have been radicalised in Saudi Arabia but these small numbers indicate that Islam is not an inherently flawed faith that requires reformation, they conclude. It should be noted that the Lowy study did not compare the beliefs and liturgical traditions of Indonesians and Middle Easterners. It is possible that such differences account for some of the different attitudes to violent jihad.

The Lowy findings are of slight relevance to the Australian domestic scene because only 5.9 per cent of Australian Muslims are of Indonesian or Malaysian origin.[cxvii] As the Lowy study indicates, the level of Islamist activity is lower in South East Asia than in the Middle East, but it is not insignificant.

A recent report from the US Agency for International Development states that in mid 2015 there were between 250 and 300 Indonesians fighting in Syria and Iraq. Most have volunteered for ISIS but several dozen are thought to be fighting for a group allied with al-Qaeda. Between 30 and 40 Indonesians had died in the fighting by mid 2015. Figures for Malaysians are less certain, but indicate that by the end of 2015 there were between 80 and 100, split between ISIS and an anti-Assad Sunni Muslim rebel alliance.[cxviii]

Since early 2014 there has been a dramatic rise in the number of Indonesians and Malaysians volunteering to fight for Islamist groups in Syria. A recent report by Singapore-based counter terrorist experts indicates that jihadist activism is gaining strength among Muslims in the Philippines, Malaysia and Eastern Indonesia.[cxix] In early 2016 the Australian Government upgraded terrorist warnings for Australian tourists travelling to Indonesia.[cxx] Even before this acceleration, some Australian jihadists received training in Malaysia and the Philippines.[cxxi] The report confirms that there is considerable volunteering for Islamist causes across ethnic and national boundaries.

Despite ethnic fractionalisation, all Islamic denominations and ethnicities present a jihadist threat, though at varying intensities.

5.3  Criminal gangs

Islamist terror does not impact citizens’ everyday lives as much as does crime. Recall senior New South Wales Police officer Nick Kaldas’s assessment that Middle Eastern communities, especially their young men, are vulnerable to recruitment by organised crime. This is consequential for neighbourhoods where mosques begin to appear associated with such communities.

Kaldas warned about communities derived from war zones such as Somalia, Sudan and Afghanistan. Indeed, crime committed by elements of Muslim communities, especially originating from Lebanon, is a daily reality in significant areas of Sydney and Melbourne. Victoria and New South Wales have had crime squads specialising in Middle Eastern and Asian gangs, the latter mainly Vietnamese. These specialist units began in the late 1980s and early 1990s. The NSW squads continue, though the Victorian squads were disbanded in 2006 due to political pressure. NSW expanded its Asian crime squad in 2013 to counter the growing scale and sophistication of Asian organised crime known as syndicates.[cxxii] These imported illicit drugs and laundered the resulting profits. In addition they forged partnerships with gangs of bikies, Balkans, Russians and Middle Easterners.

Recently there has been an intensification of violent competition between Middle Eastern crime families for shares of the illicit drug trade.[cxxiii] About thirty families are involved. The NSW Police warn that the problem is spreading beyond Sydney, echoing Kaldas’s concerns. The main social impact of these crime families is the harm done by addictive drugs. However, the criminal activity associated with this can also affect innocent citizens. In New South Wales, the suburbs that attract the ethnic crime squads are hotspots for violent crime. In 2010 twice the state average of shooting offences occurred in Fairfield-Liverpool, central western Sydney and Canterbury-Bankstown, the area of greatest Muslim settlement and location of large mosques such as at Lakemba.[cxxiv]

The head of the Middle Eastern Crime Squad, Detective Superintendent Peter McErlain, explained in May 2016: “[F]rom the drugs comes violence, extortion, stand-overs, drug runs, geographic franchise drug runs and all that internal-external violence that comes from that, whether that be shootings, drive-by shootings, right up to murder.” The crime families based in southwest Sydney have extended their operations interstate and overseas, via distributed family members. Bikie gangs are included in the networks. Execution-style murders are now occurring in broad daylight, due to competition between the gangs. Less commonly, organised criminal gangs have targeted public figures and police officials.

The behavioural basis of these organisations is primarily the extended family. Mafia-type crime gangs usually have a kinship basis, due in part to the trust engendered by close interpersonal bonds.[cxxv] Kinship can extend beyond the family to the clan and ethno-religious group, especially when the latter is not well integrated in mainstream society. As assimilation proceeds, group solidarity declines and criminal element become marginalised. Thus the longevity of organised crime depends on how long an ethno-religious group remains separate from the mainstream. Risk factors for prolonged separateness include depressed socio-economic status, documented in section 4.5. Low intermarriage rates also slow integration and prolong ethnic organised crime.

5.4  Low rates of intermarriage

The intermarriage rates for immigrants from Muslim countries in Australia are low but not reliable guides because immigration from most Muslim countries is too recent to produce a multi-generational pattern.[cxxvi]

Another complication is that the intermarriage rate is a poor measure of endogamy effort. Two populations with the same rate of intermarriage can have very different traditions promoting marriage within the group, if they are in different circumstances or are of different sizes. For example, imagine two groups both of which in-marry 80 per cent of the time, but the first is 80 per cent of the population while the second is 1 per cent. The first group’s rate of endogamy is consistent with chance alone, while the second group’s rate is only possible if it is segregated in some way or has a highly endogamous culture. Conversely, newly-arrived minorities can be expected to have low rates of intermarriage due to the segregated circumstances of travel, arrival and initial settlement. However, if a minority retains a high rate of in-marriage after a few generations, that is good evidence of a robust endogamous tradition.

Looking overseas to other Western societies, Islamic immigrant minorities stand out as resistant to intermarriage. In Germany, France, England, Belgium and the Netherlands, religion is a stronger brake on intermarriage than race, and immigrant Muslim and Hindu communities are the slowest to marry with the native population. Christian immigrants are among the fastest to intermarry into Christian societies.[cxxvii] A more recent study reports similar findings. In Germany, Belgium, Holland, Britain and France, Muslim intermarriage rates average 8 per cent, the lowest among immigrant groups. This increased only slightly in the second generation, to 10.5 per cent. By comparison, the (non-Muslim) West Indian rate was 26 per cent in the first generation, 53 per cent in the second.[cxxviii]

These findings support the theory advanced by Richard Alba and Victor Nee in the United States, that intermarriage is strongly influenced by institutions which facilitate or discourage integration.[cxxix] Institutions can include religions and other traditions brought by the immigrants. The Islamic religion, and thus mosques, appear to constitute an effective endogamous culture. As a result, Islam and associated cultural and economic characteristics tend to persist.

5.5  Anti-social behaviour: views from outside Islam

This section reviews evidence indicating that terrorism and organised crime fit a broader pattern of anti-social behaviour. Section 4.4 discussed the strong over-representation of Muslims in Australia’s prisons, up to three times the non-Muslim per capita rate. The following descriptions indicate that crime and terrorism belong to a spectrum of identity issues related to the strain of integrating immigrants that differ from mainstream Australia in religion and culture. The integration process is further complicated by multicultural ideology, which provides a ready-made victim narrative about minorities being treated unfairly by the majority.

Complaints from citizens confirm Police Deputy Commissioner Nick Kaldas’s warning discussed earlier concerning the criminal behaviour of young men in Middle Eastern communities. Many non-Muslim citizens have expressed concern about Muslims moving into their neighbourhoods. Evidence for this includes the rise of anti-mosque community groups, whose complaints include accusations of anti-social behaviour on the part of Muslims. An articulate complaint was provided in 2011 by senior journalist Greg Sheridan, who reported first- and second-hand observations of a decline in social environment in his suburb of inner-Western Sydney near the large Lakemba Mosque.[cxxx] Sheridan’s account fleshes out Kaldas’s broad-stroke analysis with descriptions of aggressive public behaviour. It is relevant that Greg Sheridan is a long-term advocate of large scale non-European immigration and supporter of ethnic pluralism.

Sheridan recounted various aggressive acts by Muslims that were related to age, male gender and ethnicity. He witnessed an unprovoked attack on a middle-aged white woman by two Arabic-looking young men. His family was threatened. One of his sons was attacked by local boys of Middle Eastern appearance who “objected to white boys playing cricket”. Another son was “challenged by a boy with a gun”. Sheridan himself suffered abuse for his pro-Israel writings and for being white. “At some point it became unwise to walk on Canterbury Road. A white guy in a suit was a natural target for abuse or a can of beer or something else hurled from a passing car.”

He spoke with a senior police officer in the area, who reported elevated levels of violent crime. The nearby Lakemba police station was peppered with bullets.

He summarised the decline in social conditions as having three causes: “the growth of a macho, misogynist culture among young men that often found expression in extremely violent crime; a pervasive atmosphere of anti-social behaviour in the streets; and the simultaneous growth of Islamist extremism and jihadist culture.”

Three other factors are implied in Sheridan’s examples. The first is the ethnic component of Islamic aggression. He noted that the problem behaviour came from men and boys of “Middle Eastern appearance” and reported their targeting white people. The cases he raises do not make it clear whether ethnicity or religion was the primary cause of aggression. He could have noted the anti-Semitic views that sometime accompany criticism of Israel, views that have been spoken by Islamic leaders.[cxxxi] These incidents, though not common, have been sufficiently serious to attract the attention of ASIO.[cxxxii] Secondly, Sheridan’s remarks about “macho” and misogyny could have been extended to a discussion of extreme views about homosexuality and other non-heterosexual orientations, which are mainstream in the main Islamic faiths. Again, such views are preached by religious leaders.[cxxxiii] Thirdly, only indirectly implied in Sheridan’s article is the territorial element in Muslim group behaviour. The incidents he described occurred in the vicinity of the local mosque. The anti-social behaviour described by Sheridan has a territorial component, usually directed against locals on the basis of religious and ethnic identity. Sheridan could have noted that a factor contributing to the 2005 riots at Cronulla Beach was young Lebanese-Muslim men laying claim to the beach.[cxxxiv]

These descriptions agree with reports by ex-detective in the N.S.W. Police Force, Tim Priest, who described Muslim Lebanese families’ hostile behaviour towards neighbours and police in the mid 1990s. One family in Redfern was notorious for “terrorising the locals with random assaults, drug dealing, robberies and violent anti-social behaviour”.[cxxxv]

Sheridan speculates that one cause of the decline in social conditions was rising numbers of Muslims. “The US, Canada and Australia have far smaller Muslim migrant communities as a percentage of their total populations than do most of the troubled nations of Europe.” Perhaps what makes Islam in Europe more unruly than in Australia is not different government policies or different cultures, but the much larger numbers. Mosques are another cause implied by Sheridan. He referred to the argument that Islam does not separate political and religious functions. Church and state are not separate in Islamic civilisation, as they have increasingly been in Christendom since the mid seventeenth century. The mosque is simultaneously a place of worship and a hub of political organisation.

5.6  Anti-social behaviour: views from within Islam

In late October 2015, a conference was held in Bankstown, in Sydney’s west, at which a leader of Islamist group Hizb ut-Tahrir criticised the singing of the Australian national anthem. He expressed opposition to immigrants being asked to pledge support for democratic values. Mr Uthman Badar claimed that these rituals amounted to “forced assimilation”.[cxxxvi] This was in response to uproar the week before caused by the principal of a Victorian primary school who excused Muslim students from singing the national anthem. The students were permitted to walk out of the assembly hall while the anthem was being sung.[cxxxvii] The criticism of assimilation specifically involved religious identity. The aim, Mr. Badar claimed, was to “make Muslims less Islamic” by promoting democracy and secular values. He claimed that the government’s attempt to promote moderate forms of Islam was “doomed to failure”.

That Muslims in Australia have serious problems in their relations with other Australians was implied by Ahmed Kilani, founder of Australia’s largest Muslim media organisation, the website Muslim Village. Kilani called on Australian Muslims to renounce religiously-motivated violence and embrace Australian culture.[cxxxviii] He believed it necessary to enact a wholesale reform of the social architecture of Australian Islam. Reflecting the profound cultural differences regarding Muslim’s treatment of women and attitude to violent jihad, Kilani said that this reform should involve quotas for women and young people in key organisations, and a charter of social and religious values that condemns terrorism.[cxxxix] In a comment in The Australian newspaper, Kilani described the imams who preach at Australian mosques as undergoing a “crisis of leadership” because they are less enculturated to Australian values than their constituents. At the same time, Mr. Kilani is engaged in establishing specifically Muslim media, including a television channel. His goal is to unite all Muslims within a moderate, Westernised form of Islam without the present ethnic identities of Lebanese, Egyptian, and so on. This implies that Australian Muslims are divided by ethnicity, and that it influences their behaviour. Indeed, Kilani criticised the control of key Islamic institutions, such as mosques and peak community groups, by “ethnic tribes”.

Kilani was also critical of imams being recruited or trained overseas, as this contributed to keeping the community leadership out of touch with the Australian mainstream. Indeed, it will be difficult to change doctrine in Australia while the Muslim leadership is tied to global Islam. The Australian National Imams Council (ANIC), the country’s only central Islamic authority, has 18 directors, 17 of whom are born overseas. The organisation appears to seek out foreign imams. The only Australian-born director of ANIC is sheik Shady Alsuleiman.[cxl]

Ahmed Kilani’s concern about cultural incompatibility of the Islamic religious hierarchy in Australia is replicated across the West. A common response has been deradicalisation programs, which are yet to prove effective. One critic of these programs, the ex-Muslim Ayaan Hirsi Ali, argues that the problem is too deeply rooted for superficial deradicalisation to work.[cxli] The problem is not limited to the small number of Muslims who practise violence but to the much larger number who tolerate those who plot terror among them. This tolerance of violence was evident in Brussel’s Muslim community, where the November 2015 terror attacks in Paris were planned. Like Ahmed Kilani, Hirsi Ali calls for fundamental doctrinal reform that would allow Muslims to retain their sense of identity and community, but within a pacified religion. Like Kilani, this view implies that until fundamental doctrinal and structural reforms are completed, Islam will remain incompatible with Western religion and culture.

NSW Police diversity chief Nick Kaldas disagrees that the Muslim hierarchy is a primary cause of anti-social and terrorist behaviour. Muslim community leaders often have no control over young people with behavioural problems, he states.[cxlii] This implies that the problem is sociological and psychological, not a matter of top-down causality from Muslim leaders.

Tension between Muslim and non-Muslims also involves lay Muslims. An example is the Navy’s chief adviser on Islamic affairs, Captain Mona Shindy, whose official social media activities were shut down after a series of inappropriate messages. In one message, Shindy praised controversial Zimbabwe-based Islamic cleric, Mufti Musa Ismail Menk. Other messages criticised Australia’s foreign policy and attitudes to Muslims and terrorism.[cxliii]

The murder of a Parramatta Police worker by a radicalised Muslim teenager in October 2005 brought criticisms of the government’s deradicalisation program. The killer had been in one such program at the time he undertook the terrorist act. One criticism based on close knowledge of Muslim youth was made by Father Chris Riley, founder of the well-regarded charity Youth off the Streets. Riley’s views provide valuable insights into the perspective of young Muslims, with whom he has worked and has close knowledge and sympathy.[cxliv] Riley saw the problem as one of identity and belonging. The “vital thing” missing from deradicalisation programs was to “help these young people feel like they belong in Australia”, Riley stated. He added that such help was not an intellectual process but an experiential one. Youths need to be integrated into the community by interacting with it, for example in voluntary charitable work. Six of Father Riley’s young people had gone to Syria, two being killed. The root cause of their attraction to this cause was their loss of a sense of belonging in Australia, with a resulting sense of hopelessness. They lacked a sense of inclusion and purpose. The solution was to engage them in service to the community, by which he meant the non-Muslim community. Father Riley identified with these Muslim youths, agreeing with their view that Australia is a “racist nation” that persecutes Muslims. He alleged that Muslim youth are confronted with discrimination and exclusion every day; mosques are defaced. He stated that multiculturalism was exacerbating identity problems. The deradicalisation program concentrated on celebrating the youths’ cultural difference. Riley’s criticism could have gone further by noting how multiculturalism engenders a hostile view of Anglo Australia and portrays it in oppositional form as the “other” in opposition to the “we” of immigrant minorities and indigenous peoples.[cxlv] Taken together, these views from the Muslim perspective indicate complex causes of anti-social behaviour, including the experience of immigrants with conflicting religious, cultural and national interests.


  1. Summary and conclusions

6.1  Summary

A social impact study provides planning authorities with information about how a proposed development will most likely affect a population’s way of life, culture, sense of community (identity and social cohesion), social and architectural environment, health and wellbeing. Existing social impact assessments of mosques were reviewed and found to be empirically incomplete, theoretically weak and ethnocentric.

The study adopts a biosocial theory, Ethnic Nepotism, that has proven useful in explaining and predicting the effects of ethno-religious diversity. Religions are conceptualised as entities that evolved culturally to solve adaptation problems. To generate a hypothesis concerning distinctive Muslim behaviour, overseas social impacts were reviewed. The results were two hypotheses of the social impact of Muslims in Australian neighbourhoods.

The first hypothesis is that ethno-religious diversity causes a loss of trust and cohesion in Australian communities as it does overseas. The second hypothesis is that distinctive Muslim characteristics cause additional negative social impacts.

The first hypothesis is confirmed quantitatively by seven studies conducted between 2006 and 2013. Muslims formed part of the diversity being studied but were not a focus of the research. One study by the Australian Bureau of Statistics found that in 2014 diverse communities volunteer less, as do immigrants of non-English speaking background. Four of the studies were surveys conducted by the Scanlon Foundation in conjunction with the Multicultural Foundation of Australia. The surveys, published in 2007, 2009, 2012 and 2012, all found that diversity significantly undercuts feelings of trust and safety, confidence in harmony, the quality of life, support for immigration, and acceptance of refugees.

The second hypothesis was confirmed quantitatively by seven lines of converging evidence. Muslim communities are associated with strongly negative social impacts for long-time Australians (third generation), much worse than those produced by ethno-religious diversity or by Buddhism, the other large minority religion.

The Scanlon area surveys indicate that in areas with large Muslim populations, disapproval of Muslims is about five times the disapproval of Buddhists in areas with large Buddhist populations. This result has been repeated by every survey since 2010 when the question was first included. Even among strong supporters of multiculturalism, who generally accept minorities, in 2014 as many as 18 per cent were negative towards Muslims, but only 2 per cent towards Buddhists. In the same year, when the survey was conducted more anonymously online, overall negative attitudes towards Muslims rose to 44 per cent. The findings are replicated in patterns of reported discrimination. While ethnic groups within Islam were disapproved, the negativity towards the Islamic religion was stronger.

The Scanlon results were confirmed by a Roy Morgan poll in 2013, which found that 70 per cent of respondents distrusted Islamic influence, and a Progress Institute survey in 2015, which found that only 24 per cent of respondents felt “very safe”, a sharp fall from the 42 per cent who gave that reply in 2010.

These extensive survey results were confirmed by imprisonment rates in Victoria, NSW and Queensland. Overall, Muslims are imprisoned at almost three times their proportion of the population. In addition, Muslim unemployment and public dependency rates are two to three times greater than the Australian averages. Finally, lack of affiliation with Australia is indicated by patterns of Muslim military volunteering. About five times the number of Australian Muslims have volunteered or attempted to volunteer for jihadist forces in the Middle East than are presently serving in the Australian Armed Forces. This despite a very high casualty rate suffered by jihadists.

These converging lines of evidence help explain the survey findings of a steep decline in social cohesion and a rise in fear and uncertainty in areas with large numbers of Muslims and a similarly steep decline in acceptance of Muslims nationwide.

Qualitative evidence offers further confirmation of these results, while adding behavioural detail. Muslim and Middle Eastern communities contribute disproportionately to terrorism and organised crime, according to state and federal security experts. Islamic terrorism is responsible for the National Terrorism Threat Advisory System warning that another act of domestic terrorism is “probable”, a high setting to which it was raised in September 2014. Muslims show ethnic variation in rates of terrorism, high for Lebanese, low for Indonesians. However, the latter constitute only 5.9 per cent of Australian Muslims, and jihadism is increasing in Indonesia, Malaysia and the Philippines. Criminal Muslim families are so prominent in distribution of illicit drugs and related violence, that Victoria and NSW both have had crime squads dedicated to “Middle Eastern Crime”. These threats are predicted by experts to last for generations. Contributing to this are low Muslim intermarriage rates, also evident in Europe.

Organised crime and terrorism belong to a wider spectrum of anti-social behaviour. The qualitative evidence includes descriptions of anti-social behaviour, including the broad-spectrum crime described in earlier, anti-white assaults and harassment, and hyper-masculine and misogynist culture among young men. Similar accounts are provided by experienced journalists and police. The view from within Islam tacitly confirms these accounts either by calling for a more pacifist Islam in tune with Australian values, or by denouncing Australian society.

To summarise, quantitative and qualitative data indicate that Muslims exert negative social impacts on local neighbourhoods significantly beyond that caused by ethno-religious diversity. More than immigrants and minorities in general, Muslims weaken community identity and cohesion, reduce trust and sense of public safety, and increase anti-social behaviour, crime, and unemployment in local areas. In addition, Islamic populations and mosques increase the risk of organised crime and terrorism, a trend expected to last for generations.

Mosques contribute to negative social impacts in their areas by attracting Muslims and by reproducing Islamic doctrines and identity. They also slow assimilation by promoting within-group marriage. These have been adaptive features of mosques and Islam because they preserve identity and community cohesion. They have the same effects among Muslim immigrants but in so doing slow integration with the larger society, with resulting negative social impacts on local populations.

These invidious impacts are not conceptualised in biosocial theory in terms of superiority or inferiority. Religions are seen as cultural systems adapted to regulate group sociality and protect them in competition with other ethno-religious groups. Islam developed in the Middle East, where societies are segmentary with low rates of intermarriage and long-term competition between populations. In that social environment they needed strong group boundaries and higher levels of ethnocentric collectivism than found in Europe. This creates difficulties between Muslims and non-Muslims in Australia, a society developed by Europeans steeped in traditions of out-marriage (exogamy) and individualism. The social impact problems described in this study are due to incompatibility between ethno-religious traditions, a clash of civilisations.

6.2  Policy implications for planning authorities

The finding of this review is that Muslim communities generally have social impacts on local communities more negative than ethno-religious diversity alone.

How might councils and state planning authorities use that information to evaluate proposals to develop new mosques and other Islamic facilities?

The short answer is that planning authorities should consider general social impacts along together with impacts specific to the mosque being proposed. If those proposing a mosque or other Islamic building deny or ignore general negative social impacts, they should be asked to explain why those impacts will not result from their particular proposal. Failure to provide convincing answers should count against the proposal because the social impacts documented in the present study are severe – sharply lower community cohesion, trust and sense of public safety, together with higher crime and unemployment. In other words, there should be a presumption that Islamic facilities have negative social impacts on local areas.

The long answer includes legal, political and ethical factors that weight social impacts in the overall planning process. In some circumstances general negative social impacts might not apply. This is a complex matter beyond the scope of a social impact statement, warranting separate treatment. But some relevant factors can be briefly identified.

The first factor is the legal and moral reality that the overwhelming majority of Australian Muslims are citizens with full civil and human rights. They are innocent of any crime. They have the same freedom of religion as other Australians, a freedom which entails ready access to places of worship. This is their legal right and accords with the morality of fairness.

A second factor is an important qualification of the finding of the present study, that mosques generally have negative social impacts on their neighbourhoods. In local areas with sizeable Muslim populations, mosques might be socially beneficial not only for Muslims but for their non-Muslim neighbours. When an imam is moderate and identifies with Australia, religious instruction and pastoral care can mitigate anti-social behaviour and facilitate integration; the whole community benefits.

A third factor is multicultural ideology. This ideology exerts political and legal force via federal and state governments and the media, which are generally committed to it. This is true rhetorically and practically. Political leaders recite multicultural dogmas asserting cohesion and strength in diversity, ignoring long-standing social science findings to the contrary.[cxlvi] The rhetoric is given legal teeth by the human rights apparatus built around legislation aimed at suppressing the ethnic conflict that inevitably results from rising diversity. Whatever the cultural and political origins of this dogma, it is well established on both sides of politics. Local councillors and state planning authority personnel are inhibited by and often imbued with multicultural ideology and sensitive to its formal and informal capacity to punish dissent.

A fourth factor is the flight from ethno-religious diversity and towards sympathetic identity groups. This is often given the ethnocentric name “white flight”, a term of approbrium, but it is manifested by all ethnic and religious populations. It is normal adaptive behaviour, and should not be condemned or restricted. Multiculturalism has a de facto territorial component, as people sort themselves out the better to live in a familiar environment and community with shared culture and values. Some people prefer diverse surroundings but many invest substantially in choosing suburbs and schools conducive to ethno-religious identity. Self-sorting by class and religion and ethnicity is a long-term trend evident in Britain and the United States over several decades.[cxlvii] The pattern is also clear in Australia regarding choice of neighbourhood and schools.[cxlviii] It is demonstrated by the patch-quilt ethnic maps of Australia’s large cities.[cxlix] Self-sorting resulting in clustering of similar people is one of the best documented human social behaviours.[cl] The territorial component of multiculturalism is unofficial but pronounced. It probably helps explain the widespread opposition to mosques, though this is a poorly researched phenomenon. The flight from diversity is an unintended consequence of and a potential constraint on planning decisions.

Taken together, these factors can put planners in the invidious position of umpiring intense conflicts of interest and value. In evaluating a religious building they could be torn between the values of freedom of religion and duty to preserve their communities’ way of life and social cohesion. Or they could be forced to choose between multiculturalism’s diversity ideal and constituents’ need for a safe environment.

These conflicts of interest and value will be difficult to reconcile given Australia’s rapidly changing demographics. For decades federal governments on both sides of politics have been allowing high immigration intakes unselected for ethno-religious identity. This is leading to rising diversity and associated strains. Planning authorities should be looking for ways to reduce the harm being done to local communities. Given the federal government’s persistence with transformatory immigration, local government is limited to finding least-worst options, rear-guard amelioration of the worst cases of social breakdown evident in some neighbourhoods of heavy immigration settlement.

State governments set the boundaries, powers and responsibilities of local councils, including evaluation of development proposals. At present councils are not authorised to evaluate an application to build or establish a religious centre partly on identity grounds, though this factor has obvious implications for social impact. In effect the right to freedom of religion is given priority over prevention of severe negative social impact, even though access to a place of worship is not usually conditional on it being available in every municipality.

An alternate approach , which might be called territorial multiculturalism, would be to acknowledge the importance of local communities to the stability of multicultural society. The concentration of ethno-religious groups represents decades of accumulated residential choices and investment in those choices both financial and aspirational. To allow that distribution to be changed against the wishes of residents is to frustrate their free choice of social environment. To protect people’s choice of social environment, state governments could enforce the requirement that councils assemble social impact studies before approving the commissioning of a religious building. They could amend planning laws to ensure that negative social impacts count strongly against approval. They could ensure that proposals tending to change a community’s ethno-religious identity be classified as such to allow informed public discussion. Councils would be authorised to protect a particular cultural identity or mix of identities, in line with the wishes of local citizens. In case of deadlock or controversy, the will of the municipality could be determined by plebiscite. In particular councils could be authorised to deny applications on the basis of cultural or religious affiliation of the proposed centre, after assessing social impacts. As in other approval matters, state planning authorities could provide an appeals option to give residents recourse should their local council exceed its authority. The resulting approval process would allow citizens to protect the identity and cohesion of their neighbourhoods, thereby offering them some protection against the social transformation and loss of community documented in the present study.

6.3       Further research

This study raises matters in need of further research.

More needs to be known about how mosques contribute to, or hinder, Muslims’ social integration in local areas. Attention should be paid to the behaviour of non-observant Muslims and those who are secular. How does their social behaviour and rate of jihadism compare with observant members of the community?

A more detailed analysis is needed of the psychological and financial costs imposed on non-Muslims by increasing Muslim numbers in local areas. In particular, what is the prevalence and causes of non-Muslims fleeing Muslim neighbourhoods, and vice versa?

What is the impact on housing prices of increasing Muslim population compared to other populations?

What is the extent of intra-denominational and inter-ethnic mixing at mosques? Will criminal and terrorist activity become more evenly spread across the Australian Muslim population?

What would be the social benefits and costs of territorial multiculturalism? Is it constitutionally and politically feasible?



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[xxvi] Wilson, D. S. (2002). Darwin’s cathedral: The organismic nature of religion. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.

[xxvii] Salter, F. K. (2007). On genetic interests : Family, ethnicity, and humanity in an age of mass migration. New Brunswick, N.J.: Transaction Publishers.

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[xxviii] Wilson, D. S. (2002). Darwin’s cathedral: The organismic nature of religion. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.

[xxix] Koopmans, R. (2010). “Trade-offs between equality and difference: Immigrant integration, multiculturalism and the welfare state in cross-national perspective.” Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies 36(1): 1-26.

[xxx] Interview of Sanandaji.

[xxxi] Interview of Sanandaji.

[xxxii] Danish Statistical Yearbook, 2015:

[xxxiii] Swedish National Council for Crime Prevention (2005). Crime among people born in Sweden and abroad (Swedish).

[xxxiv] Interview of Tino Sanandaji by Margaret Wente, “Sweden’s ugly immigration problem”, The Globe and Mail [Canada], 11 Sept. 2015.

[xxxv] Morenoff, J. D. and A. Astor (2006). Immigrant assimilation and crime: Generational differences in youth violence in Chicago. Immigration and crime: Ethnicity, race, and violence. R. Martinez and A. Valenzuela (eds.). New York, New York University: 36-63.

[xxxvi] “Child sex abuse gangs could have assaulted ONE MILLION youngsters in the UK”, Mirror, 5 Feb. 2015.

[xxxvii] Leigh, A. (2006). “Diversity, trust and redistribution.” Dialogue: Academy of Social Sciences in Australia 25(3): 43-49. Leigh subsequently became the Labor Party’s Shadow Assistant Treasurer.

[xxxviii] Healy, E. (2007). “Ethnic diversity and social cohesion in Melbourne.” People and Place 15(4): 49-64.

[xxxix] Australian Bureau of Statistics (2015). “Introduction – General Social Survey: Summary Results, Australia, 2014”., accessed 29 Feb. 2016.

[xl], accessed 29 Feb. 2016.

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[xli], accessed 2 March 2016.

[xlii] Markus, A. (1979). Fear and hatred: Purifying Australia and California 1850-1901. Sydney: Hale & Iremonger.

[xliii] Markus, A. (2015). Australian opinion on issues of race: a broad reading of opinion polls, 1943-2014. In T. Southphommasane (Ed.), Perspectives on the Racial Discrimination Act: Papers from the 40 years of the Racial Discrimination Act 1975 (Cth) conference (pp. 16-31, Sydney: Australian Human Rights Commission, p. 37., accessed 8 June 2016.

[xliv] Markus, Andrew (2012). 2012 Scanlon Survey, Local Areas Report, p. 21.

[xlv] 2014 Scanlon Local Area Survey, p. 1,

[xlvi] Local Surveys, Mapping Social Cohesion: The Scanlon Foundation Surveys (2007), pp. 91-115. Local areas identified, p. vi.

[xlvii] 2009 Scanlon Surveys, pp. 54, 57.

[xlviii], p. 99. Accessed 3 March 2016.

[xlix], Table 12, p. 28. Accessed 3 March 2016.

[l] 2012 Scanlon Survey, Local Areas Report, Table 32, p. 30.

[li] Based on Table 32, p. 30, of the 2012 Scanlon Local Areas Report.

[lii] Based on Table 3, p. 7 of the 2012 Scanlon Survey, Local Areas Report.

[liii] 2012 Scanlon Survey, Local Areas Report.

[liv] 2012 Scanlon Survey, Local Areas Report, p. 21.

[lv] 2012 Scanlon Survey, Local Areas Report, p. 21.

[lvi] 2013 Scanlon Survey. Local areas report., pp. 14-15.

[lvii] 2013 Scanlon Survey, Local areas report, op cit., Table 26, p. 30.

[lviii], p. 1. Accessed 3 March 2016.

[lix] 2013 Scanlon Survey, Local areas report, op cit., Table 26, p. 34.

[lx] Ibid, p. 4.

[lxi] 2014 Scanlon Local Area Survey, p. 4.

[lxii] Ibid, p. 45, Table 26 and paragraphs [2] and [3].

[lxiii] Ibid., p. 59.

[lxiv] Ibid., p. 50.

[lxv] Ibid., p. 63.

[lxvi] 2015 Scanlon Social Cohesion Survey, p. 4., accessed 17 March 2016.

[lxvii] Ibid., p. 49.

[lxviii] Ibid., Table 30, p. 53.

[lxix] Ibid., p. 54, and Table 31, p. 55.

[lxx] 2012 Scanlon Survey, Table 21, p. 43., accessed 15 March 2016.

[lxxi] 2007 Scanlon Surveys, p. 103.

[lxxii] 2013 Scanlon Survey, Local areas report, op cit., Table 21, p. 30.

[lxxiii] Ibid., p. 4.

[lxxiv] Morgan, R. (2013). Australian attitudes to Islam: National omnibus poll. Melbourne: Q Society,, accessed 8 June 2016.

[lxxv] Ibid.

[lxxvi] Young, G. (2015). Australian attitudes to immigration. Brisbane, Australian Institute for Progress: 33 pp.,, p. 22. Accessed 20 March 2016.

[lxxvii] Young, G. (2015). Australian attitudes to immigration, p. 17.

[lxxviii], accessed 16 June 2015.

[lxxix] Dunn, K., Klocker, N., & Salabay, T. (2007). Contemporary racism and Islamophobia in Australia: Racializing religion. Ethnicities, 7(4), 564-589,

[lxxx] Chip le Grand and Dan Box, op cit.

[lxxxi] Sally Neighbour (2011). Cracking the cultures of crime. The Australian, 8 March, p. 11., accessed 9 June 2016. And see Neighbour’s follow-up report:, accessed 9 June 2016.

[lxxxii] State Muslim populations from: Riaz Hassan (2015). Australian Muslims: A demographic, social and economic profile of Muslims in Australia 2015. International Centre for Muslim and Non-Muslim Understanding, University of South Australia, Table 5, p. 21., accessed 31 May 2016.

State Muslim prisoners from: Chip le Grand and Dan Box (2015). “What lies behind their convictions”, The Weekend Australian, 20-21 June, p. 7., accessed 20 June 2015.

[lxxxiii] See download “Prisoner characteristics, Australia (Tables 1 to 12)”: Table 6, Prisoners, selected country of birth by most serious offence/charge (45170DO001_2015 Prisoners in Australia, 2015)., accessed 2 May 2016.

[lxxxiv] Chip le Grand and Dan Box, op cit.

[lxxxv] Riaz Hassan (2015). Australian Muslims, op cit., Table 8, p. 22.

[lxxxvi] Australian Bureau of Statistics, 4201.0 – Australian social trends, 2008. Religion., accessed 23 June 2016. The ABS adjusted Muslim women’s total fertility from 2.9 to 2.5 to allow for their lower education and income compared to women as a whole. Nevertheless, the actual fertility was 2.9 children per woman, which is 45% above average. The 2.5 figure is 25% higher than average.

[lxxxvii] Australian Bureau of Statistics (2015). 3301.0 Births, Australia, 2014, Table 9.1, Births, country of birth mother–2014. Downloaded from:, accessed 23 June 2016. Fathers were born in the same country 67.4% of the time.

[lxxxviii] Pew Research Center (2015). The future of world religions: Population growth projections, 2010-2050. Fertility., downloaded 23 June 2016.

[lxxxix] Prisoners in Australia, 2015: Country of birth., accessed 2 June 2016.

[xc] Ibid. See download “Prisoner characteristics, Australia (Tables 1 to 12)”: Table 6, Prisoners, selected country of birth by most serious offence/charge (45170DO001_2015 Prisoners in Australia, 2015)., accessed 2 May 2016.

[xci] Hassan, R. (2009). Social and economic conditions of Australian Muslims: Implications for social inclusion. NCEIS Research Papers, 2(4), 1-13. p. 9.

[xcii] Hassan (2015). Australian Muslims. Op cit., p. 45.

[xciii] Ibid.

[xciv] Ibid, Table 24, p. 46.

[xcv], accessed 2 June 2016.

[xcvi] Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet (2015). Review of Australia’s counter-terrorism machinery, January., accessed 2 June 2016.  P. 35.

[xcvii], accessed 31 May 2016.

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[xcix] Department of Defence Submission to the Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade References Committee, Inquiry into recruitment and retention of Australian Defence Force Personnel, “Recruitment of Ethnic Minorities”, para. 56, May 2001., accessed 28 May 2016.

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[cxxi] Harris-Hogan, S. (2012). Australian neo-jihadist terrorism: Mapping the network and cell analysis using wiretap evidence. Studies in Conflict & Terrorism, 35(4), 298-314,, accessed 6 June 2016.

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[cxxiv] Sally Neighbour (2011). Cracking the cultures of crime. The Australian, 8 March, p. 11., accessed 9 June 2016.

[cxxv] Salter, F. K. (2002). Ethnic nepotism as a two-edged sword: The risk-mitigating role of ethnicity among mafiosi, nationalist fighters, middlemen, and dissidents. In F. K. Salter (Ed.), Risky transactions. Kinship, ethnicity, and trust (pp. 243-289). Oxford and New York: Berghahn.

[cxxvi] Khoo, S.-E., Birrell, B., & Heard, G. (2009). Intermarriage by birthplace and ancestry in Australia. People and Place, 17(1), 15-28., accessed 10 June 2016.

And see: Heard, G., Khoo, S.-E., & Birrell, B. (2009). Intermarriage by religion in Australia. People and Place, 17(2), 43-55.

[cxxvii] Lucassen, L., & Laarman, C. (2009). Immigration, intermarriage and the changing face of Europe in the post war period. History of the Family, 14, 52-68,, accessed 9 June 2016.

[cxxviii] Kaufmann, E. Shall the religious inherit the earth? Demography and politics in the twenty-first century. London: Profile Books, p. 176.

[cxxix] Alba, R. D., & Nee, V. (2003). Remaking the American mainstream: Assimilation and contemporary immigration. Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press.

[cxxx] Sheridan, G. (2011). How I lost faith in multiculturalism. The Australian. Sydney, News Limited.

[cxxxi] Jones, J. (2004). Confronting reality: Anti-Semitism in Australia today. Jewish Political Studies Review, 16(3-4),

Anthony Klan (2015). Jews to ‘pay with blood’: extremist, The Australian, 13 March., accessed 21 June 2016.

[cxxxii] Rachel Olding (2016). Hardline Islamic preachers forced out of Sydney mosques. The Sydney Morning Herald, 17 February., accessed 21 June 2016.

[cxxxiii] Jane Wardell (2016). Anti-gay Islamic preacher Farrokh Sekaleshfar leaves Australia amid visa review. The Sydney Morning Herald, 15 June., accessed 21 June 2016.

[cxxxiv] NSW Police, Strike Force Neil. Cronulla Riots: Review of the Police Response, Vol. 2, p. 10., accessed 14 June 2016.

[cxxxv] Priest, T. (2004). The rise of Middle Eastern crime in Australia. Quadrant, 45(1-2), 9-16.

[cxxxvi], accessed 28 May 2016., accessed 28 May 2016.

[cxxxvii], accessed 28 May 2016.

[cxxxviii], accessed 28 May 2016.

[cxxxix], accessed 28 May 2016.

[cxl] Geoff Chambers (2016). Foreign-born leaders run national Muslim council, The Australian, 22 June., accessed 22 June 2016.

[cxli] Ayaan Hirsi Ali (2016). Deradicalisation programs must resist Medina militancy. The Weekend Australian, 7-8 May.

[cxlii], accessed 7 Oct. 2015.

[cxliii], accessed 27 May 2016.

[cxliv], accessed 7 Oct. 2015., accessed 7 Oct. 2015.

[cxlv] Salter, F. K. (2014). The war against human nature in Australia’s political culture: Collected essays. Social Technologies (Kindle edition),  Sydney.

[cxlvi] Consider some publications in just one year, which should have raised serious doubts about ethno-cultural diversity as a basis for social cohesion:

Alesina, A., & Spolaore, E. (1997). On the number and size of nations. The Quarterly Journal of Economics, 112(November), 1027–1056.

Easterly, W., & Levine, R. (1997). Africa’s growth tragedy: Policies and ethnic divisions. The Quarterly Journal of Economics, 112(November), 1203–1250.

Rummel, R. J. (1997). Is collective violence correlated with social pluralism? Journal of Peace Research, 34(3), 163–176.

And see section 2.1 above for biosocial analyses of ethnic diversity that incorporate and extend these findings.

[cxlvii] Marshall, H. (1979). White movement to the suburbs: A comparison of explanations. American Sociological Review, 44(December), 975-994.

Bishop, B. (2009). The big sort: Why the clustering of like-minded America is tearing us apart. Boston: Mariner Books.

[cxlviii] Healy, E., & Birrell, B. (2003). Metropolis divided: The political dynamic of spatial inequality and migrant settlement in Sydney. People and Place, 11(2), 65-87.

Patty, A. (2008, 10 March,, accessed 25 June 2016). White flight leaves system segregated by race. The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved from, accessed 25 June 2016.

Jacks, T. (2016, 2 May, White flight: Race segregation in Melbourne state schools. The Age. Retrieved from, accessed 25 June 2016.

[cxlix] SBS (2014). Where Australia’s immigrants were born., accessed 25 June 2016.

[cl] McPherson, M., Smith-Lovin, L., & Cook, J. M. (2001). Birds of a feather: Homophily in social networks. In K. S. Cook & J. Hagan (Eds.), Annual Review of Sociology (Vol. 27, pp. 415-444). Palo Alto, California: Annual Review.

Australia’s humanitarian (refugee) program 2016-2017

Submission to the Federal Government’s pre-budget consultations[i]

Frank Salter, 27 March 2016

I am a political scientist with a specialty in ethnic diversity and conflict. I have published research on the effects of ethnic diversity in relation to multiculturalism, welfare, and organised crime, in addition to ethical dimensions.[ii]

Australia’s refugee program has become so large and permanent that, per capita, it surpasses in scale many countries’ normal immigration intakes. Yet the Government’s policy is to increase the base level intake from 13,750 to 18,750 by 2018-2019, which does not include the planned special intake of 12,000 Syrians in 2016-2017. Australia is taking in refugees at the rate of 1% of its population every 17 years, soon to be every 13 years. This is not a new situation. In 1986 Australia was already taking more refugees for permanent settlement than any other country, 8 per 1000 population, or 1% of Australia’s population every 13 years.[iii]

The refugee intake is so large that it constitutes a form of immigration, though of an exceptional kind. Cumulatively, our refugee intake is sufficiently large to affect economic performance, community identity, and social stability. But compared to many normal immigrants, refugees are not generally screened for economic and social compatibility. However imperfect the regular immigration program – and it has deficiencies – its selection criteria protect Australia’s way of life much better than those applied to refugees.

This submission will argue that as presently configured in size and makeup, Australia’s refugee intake is having negative impacts on those variables. A fundamental rethink is needed to make the humanitarian program compatible with national security and social cohesion.

The submission consists of the following parts:

  • General costs of ethno-religious diversity;
  • Specific costs of diversity caused by the present refugee program;
  • Australia’s social fragmentation and government’s ahistorical rhetoric;
  • Refugee advocacy organizations;
  • Policy recommendations.


General costs of ethno-religious diversity

As presently configured, Australia’s refugee program is contributing to Australia’s ethno-religious diversity. To understand the special costs imposed by refugees, it is necessary to be familiar with the state of sociological research into the general costs of ethnic diversity. “Ethnicity” is often misunderstood. In this submission I adopt the mainstream definition which includes the following elements: a named population sharing belief in descent from common ancestors, a shared history, and sharing distinctive elements of culture, which usually includes religion.[iv] Thus ethnicity is simultaneously conditioned by history and culture and beliefs about shared descent.

A full analysis of the impacts of ethnic diversity is beyond the scope of the present submission, though a summary and sources are available in my recent analysis of the European refugee crisis.[v] In that analysis I summarise the social impact of rising ethno-religious diversity under six headings: rising social conflict; more crime from some immigrant groups; weakened social welfare net; greater ethnic inequality; racialised politics; and reduced civil liberties. Some of these headings are discussed below.

Numerous studies that compare societies around the world show that as diversity rises, social cohesion and trust tend to fall. At the same time, ethnic conflict occurs more frequently. The best known academic study of the costs of diversity was published by Harvard political scientist Robert Putnam in 2007.[vi] Putnam surveyed a large sample of US citizens in many cities. He found that diversity undermined social capital, which consists of neighbours participating in group social activities, helping and trusting one another. These findings have not always been replicated at the national level, but refined methods have confirmed the results at the neighbourhood level.[vii]

A converging series of studies using biosocial theory and methods preceded and confirmed Putnam’s finding, while adding the dimensions of inter-ethnic conflict, degraded welfare and economic measures.[viii] A recent confirmation by Finnish sociologist Tatu Vanhanen compared rates of ethnic conflict in 176 societies in the year 2010. Conflict was broadly defined, to include discrimination, the formation of ethnic parties and interest groups (racialised politics), as well as ethnic violence and civil war. Vanhanen found that ethnic diversity explained 66% of global variation in ethnic conflict, while other variables, such as per capita income, level of human development, and level of democratization, explained only 6 to 16% of the variation. In other words, much of the difference between united peaceful countries and those riven by ethnic conflict is the latters’ ethnic diversity.

Australia is not immune from the costs of diversity. Repeated studies by Australian academics find that ethnic diversity undermines social capital. An example is research conducted by Andrew Leigh, professor of economics at the Australian National University before becoming Labor’s Shadow Assistant Treasurer.[ix] Another example is work done by Professor Andrew Markus, at Monash University, who manages the Scanlon Foundation surveys of social cohesion, conducted since 2007. The surveys find that areas of high immigration settlement undergo a loss of social trust and other measures of cohesion. “This finding supports Putnam’s interpretation that ethnic diversity has a significant negative impact on social cohesion.” [x]

One cost of diversity deserving attention is the loss of civil liberties. In immigrant societies governments come under pressure to suppress “hate speech”, which can include statements of opinion and fact. In Australia Section 18C of the Racial Discrimination Act allows prosecution of individuals who state something “reasonably likely … to offend, insult, humiliate or intimidate another person or a group of people” based on their “race, colour or national or ethnic origin”. The Section has been used by some minorities to silence their critics. And several minority leaders combined to defeat the Abbott government’s attempt to reform Section 18C in order to continue silencing critics.[xi] Whether or not one agrees with such legislation it is evidence of ethnic conflict.

Specific costs of diversity caused by the present refugee program

These costs of diversity are magnified by the refugee intake because refugees are not selected to suit Australia’s needs. The points system and employer nominations used to select many regular immigrants reduces the diversity of the intake by nationality and class, compared to what would result from random selection of immigrants from around the world.[xii] English language is an advantage in the points-tested independent sub-programs of the skilled intake, and in most of the other sub-programs of the skilled intake, as is possession of occupational skills. It is more difficult to acquire these skills in countries in developing economies, such as are common in Africa and the Middle East and parts of Asia. At the same time societies with small middle classes are more prone to authoritarian regimes and civil wars, major causes of refugee flows. As a result of these factors, a much higher proportion of refugees find it difficult to find work or fit into society in Australia. They are more likely to come from Africa and the Middle East, and more likely to be Muslims, increasing Australia’s ethno-religious diversity more rapidly (per capita intake) than does normal immigration.

Also relevant is evidence that conflict is intensified when the antagonistic parties have different religions.[xiii] The resulting dysfunction has been inflicted on working class suburbs in the large cities.

The result is that refugees and their descendants are more prone to indigence and crime, especially those from Africa and the Middle East. One only need follow the news to document the harm done. Recently Sudanese and Pacific Islander[xiv] youth rioted in Melbourne (Saturday 12 March 2016), overwhelming police. There were similar riots in Melbourne by African youth on New Year in 2014, when Salvation Army staff described the situation as resembling a “war zone”. Most of the Africans originate from refugees taken in from Sudan and other trouble spots in Africa. Sudan is a largely Muslim society. Further back, another problem group has been Lebanese Muslims whose parents were accepted as refugees by the Fraser government in the 1980s. The result has been chronic unemployment and criminality, including the tribal pack rapes of Anglo girls.[xv]

Problems with integrating Sudanese were admitted by Kevin Andrews, the Immigration Minister in the Howard Government, in 2007. The Sudanese intake was reduced before all applications from Africa were suspended for a year. This was in response to problems with Somali refugees, also Muslims. At the time Andrews explained that “some groups don’t seem to be settling and adjusting into the Australian way of life as quickly as we would hope”. That has proven to be an understatement. These examples of poor integration by African and Arab refugees continue to scar Australian communities. They were grievous errors of judgment by governments on both sides of politics.

The fallout from bad refugee policy is a real and continuing threat. NSW Police Deputy Commissioner Nick Kaldas, the senior officer responsible for diversity issues, warned in August 2015 that terrorism was a real possibility wherever Muslim communities develop. He pointed out that the terror threat was not limited to big cities, but to emerging “Middle Eastern” communities in regional centres, such as Newcastle, Wollongong, Coffs Harbour, Wagga and Dubbo. He was especially concerned about refugees, young men who had fled conflict zones such as Somalia, Afghanistan and the Middle East. They were especially vulnerable to being recruited by criminals and extremists, he said. The risk posed by these communities would remain for generations, Kaldas stated.[xvi] Kaldas did not explain why Middle Eastern refugee groups pose the greatest risk, why they suffer economic and educational failure, nor why they will remain such a persistent threat to their local communities and to Australia. Such analysis is not part of the policing function. But it is critical to the formulation of prudent policy.

No wonder Australian public opinion has hardened against illegal immigrants. It is also becoming more negative towards legal immigration, especially of Muslims.[xvii] According to a qualitative survey of 1,349 respondents conducted by the Australian Institute for Progress, in 2015 only 8% of citizens thought that Muslim immigration had been good for Australia. Forty eight percent thought it had been bad for Australia.[xviii] That this is a selective reaction against Muslims is indicated by the previously mentioned Scanlon Surveys, which found in 2014 that 11.5% of respondents in immigrant areas expressed strongly negative attitudes towards Muslims, but only 2% were similarly critical of Buddhists.[xix]

This negative reaction to Muslims is not only or largely due to terrorism. It is mostly due to a failure to integrate into Australian society and economy. The problem was described by journalist Greg Sheridan in 2011, well before home-grown Islamic terrorism took its first victims.[xx] Until then Sheridan had been a leading exponent of multiculturalism and the diverse immigration that feeds it. Sheridan reported many examples of anti-social behavior by Muslim Australians in his neighbourhood near the Lakemba Mosque, in Sydney. These included racially-motivated attacks against Anglo Australians. He interviewed a senior police officer who reported that Arabs in the Lakemba area of Sydney presented a severe policing problem, with high rates of violent crime.

Like the other costs of ethno-religious diversity, restricted civil liberties can also be attributed disproportionately to Australia’s refugee intake. Groups that feel especially threatened by Islamist extremism are lobbying for ever tighter restrictions on racial vilification. In October 2015, six ethnic and cultural organizations joined with the peak Jewish organization in NSW to call for stronger criminal sanctions to be applied against expressions of racial hatred. This was in response to the NSW authorities’ failure to prosecute a leader of the Islamist group Hizb ut-Tahrir, who sermonised that Muslims should engage in jihad to “rid” the world of “Jewish hidden evil”.[xxi] None of the six complainant organizations was Islamic or Arabic, indicating that the immigrant community has become polarised between two camps, Muslims and non-Muslims. As we have seen, the growth of the Muslim community is significantly accelerated by Australia’s large refugee intake. Stiffening laws against racial hatred seems common sense for citizens subjected to virulent verbal attacks, which could incite violence. Unfortunately the effect is to limit freedom of speech, a basic civil liberty. Organic social cohesion is far preferable to that imposed by coercive social controls, such as the Racial Discrimination Act, its Orwellian section 18C, and the associated apparatus of commissioners and courts. But natural cohesion requires vigilance in selecting immigrants and refugees.

Financial costs are also special to refugees. Beyond the substantial cost of training, housing and welfare is the need to invest in infrastructure. In a modern society such as Australia, infrastructure includes not only water, gas, electricity, and telecom lines, but power generation, schools and teachers, roads, police and courts. Economist Jane O’Sullivan estimates those costs to total more than $100,000 for every new citizen.[xxii] These costs apply to all immigrants but those admitted under the general program are likely to begin to repay those costs not long after arriving. A much lower proportion of refugees become productive members of the workforce. Many never pay into the system. Australians should be informed that their largesse towards refugees as presently chosen not only has severe social impacts, but financial ones also.

This has resulted from the policy of excluding a significant fraction of Australia’s immigration intake, the 5-10% made up of humanitarian cases, from responsible selection criteria.

Australia’s social fragmentation and government’s ahistorical rhetoric

The present Federal Government implicitly admitted to a crisis in social cohesion when, in 2014-2015, it consulted the public on how citizenship might be used to reduce Islamic terrorism. Those who wrote the discussion paper were ambitious. They demanded that citizenship, a legalistic concept, should alone be sufficient to foster love of country and respect for other Australians. The paper was full of the usual multicultural platitudes, such as: “As a nation, we have found unity in our diversity and respect in our differences.” Continued immigration was “non-negotiable”, the paper declared.[xxiii]

Readers might never guess that the same fallacious citizenship doctrine – that legal statutes can substitute for organic ties developed over centuries – allowed the social fragmentation being experienced by Australia and many other Western societies. The paper did not let on that homegrown terrorists had attacked police and civilians in Melbourne and Sydney, that security agencies had warned that further attacks were probable, that hardened jihadist fighters would be returning to Australia from the Middle East, that the NSW police expert on diversity issues believed the threat from radicalised Muslims would last for generations, that surveys had shown that the more diverse a suburb the lower its occupants’ sense of security and cohesion, and that the negative reaction of third-generation Australians against Muslims was especially strong.[xxiv] The authors of the paper did not connect these many signs of an unravelling society with immigration and multicultural policies, the overt racialisation of electoral politics, or with decades of high refugee intakes. The authors – the Australian Government – were clueless about the relevance of Australia’s falling level of volunteering[xxv] and about the difference between a nation and a (political) state.[xxvi]

The same ideology – a version of citizenism – was part and parcel of the multicultural experiment initiated by the Fraser government in the 1970s against the will of the Australian people, that has given us rising social chaos and home-grown terrorism, where young people born and raised in Australia join overseas terrorist groups. It is no coincidence that the same Fraser government initiated a permanent refugee intake coordinated with the United Nations.

It should be noted that Australia ratified the UN Refugee Convention in 1954, at a time when people smugglers and long-distance flows of refugees were almost unknown. It is widely acknowledged among responsible analysts that the UN Convention is a failure, that it is undermining the national interests of receiving nations and promoting people smugglers.[xxvii] By handing over some control to the UN, a body with a long track record of anti-Western bias, Australia has yielded control of an important part of its immigration program to people who do not share our national interests.

Poor governance of refugee issues has been associated with rhetoric divorced from history. In initiating the consultation over the humanitarian intake, the Minister for Immigration, the Hon. Peter Dutton, boasted of the success of Australia’s original refugee program, after WWII, implying that we should continue to accept large intakes from around the world. As noted earlier, the Government has announced that our already high intake will be increased to 18,750 places by 2018-19 (again, not including the special intake of 12,000 Syrians).[xxviii] Dutton did not note that the post-WWII program was made to conform with the selection criteria applied to immigrants at that time. Refugees were chosen to be culturally assimilable. In other words, the refugee intake was made part of the immigration program. The abandonment of that principle in the 1970s had dangerous social consequences for Australia, contributing to a rapid rise in ethno-religious diversity, the transformation of cohesive local communities and rising levels of ethnic conflict.

Refugee advocacy organizations

The Minister deserves praise for opening up the humanitarian program to democratic consultation. For too long the process has been an elite conclave, “conducted in quiet consultation with refugee, church and ethnic community groups”.[xxix] Ian Rintoul, spokesman for the Refugee Action Coalition, is worried that allowing the public to express its views might introduce a proposal to reduce intake numbers. Fear of the public is understandable, because consultations have been monopolised by individuals and organization who act as advocates for refugees, without taking into consideration the interests of the Australian people. Neither have governments seen fit to include in the consultation process bodies that place Australia’s interests first. This has been the case since the 1980s or earlier, and helps explain the extremity of refugee policy since that time. To better make this point, this section examines perhaps the most important refugee advocacy body, the Refugee Council of Australia.

The Refugee Council is the peak non-government agency focusing on refugees. It is typical of bodies supporting generous humanitarian intakes. It holds a privileged position in the consultation process, being invited annually since 1984 by federal governments to provide advice on policy for the upcoming year.[xxx] The RCOA boasts of consulting with stakeholders around Australia on the needs of refugees, how Australia might better meet their needs, for example in the post-arrival settlement process, and how large the intake should be.

Striking – by its absence – is any consideration of how refugees harm Australia or consultation with bodies motivated to provide relevant information. The RCOA treats its role as advocacy for refugees, unqualified by concern for Australia. They promote ever larger refugee intakes in an open-ended manner. For example, in September 2015 the RCOA president, Phil Glendenning, criticised Australia for not taking an additional 20,000 refugees from Syria, despite this country having one of the most generous resettlement program on a per capita basis in the world. He accused Australia of having a special responsibility to open its borders to refugees because it indirectly contributed to the war in Syria, ignoring the fact that Australian forces were deployed against the terrorists. He praised Germany for taking in almost one million refugees, implying that doing so was responsible policy. These views went uncorrected by the ABC interviewer.[xxxi] RCOA and the ABC were engaged in advocacy for refugees, not formulating responsible policy that treats Australia and other Western societies as stakeholders with real interests to protect.

A responsible approach that balances refugee interests with those of the Australian people is left to the Federal Government. But until recently no government, from either side of politics, has sought out advice from those who advocate for Australian national interests. It is a scandalous record. To its credit, the present Coalition government cut funding to the RCOA in 2014 after belatedly realizing it to be an advocacy group. The powerful interests behind the body maintained its core revenues of $888,000 in the 2015 financial year.[xxxii] The Government is now opening consultation to allow the public to voice opinions.

In 2015 the RCOA had over 200 institutional members.[xxxiii] These included a cross-section of humanitarian bodies, with human rights bodies and churches well represented. There was also a large number of ethnic lobbies, consisting of 45 pro-immigration and pro-multiculturalism groups, advocating for minority ethnic groups, and 21 ethnic associations which also advocate for non-Anglo minorities.[xxxiv] It is remarkable that not one member organization represents the Australian majority or the Australian national interest. Why is protecting Australians not considered a humanitarian goal? Equally remarkable is the moral contradiction that allows humanitarians to work cheek by jowl with tribally-motivated ethnocentrists, who are interested mainly in benefiting a particular people or group of peoples. These ethnic activists pay lip service to universalist ideals but their ethnic organizations have very different motivations to their Christian and other humanitarian allies. For the multicultural lobby, humanitarian rhetoric is often a vehicle for advancing ethnic interests. They are happy that the same vehicle rides roughshod over Australians’ national sentiments, which they view as tribal competition. But how, in good conscience, can the genuine humanitarians in the RCOA facilitate tribal aggression, especially when directed against their own nation? The RCOA appears to be morally corrupt and disloyal to Australia, yet is the peak NGO advising on refugee policy; it is treated with respect by the mainstream media and politicians.

Policy recommendations

The Government’s briefing paper asks those making submissions to answer detailed questions concerning refugee policy.[xxxv] This assumes an insider’s knowledge of the system, which is unfair to most Australians wishing to express an opinion. It is also inappropriate that the questions do not canvass opposition to the system as a whole.

Instead of answering these questions in detail, I shall recommend broad principles for reforming the refugee program, and note those principles’ likely impact.

In the foregoing analysis I have argued that the refugee intake constitutes a sizable immigration program in its own right. That program’s exemption from normal immigration criteria has harmed the fabric of Australia’s society. Governments should put Australia’s national interests first.

Any sizeable refugee intake – more than dozens annually – should be subjected to the same criteria that have been relatively successful in choosing peaceful, productive immigrants. Any improvements made to the normal immigration program would then automatically flow onto selection of refugees.

Australia should withdraw from the 1951 UN Refugee Convention and work towards a new agreement that respects national interests.[xxxvi] In addition, the planned intake of 12,000 Syrian refugees should be reassessed. The Government has belatedly indicated its intention of allocating most places to non-Muslim minorities but that degree of selectivity falls short of the criteria applied to immigrants.

The effect of applying immigration-standard criteria will be drastically to reduce the refugee intake. Some of the resulting savings, which will be large, should be switched to funding humanitarian assistance overseas, especially in our region.

A practical and moral consideration in deciding refugee policy is the very large numbers involved. By the end of 2014, UNHCR estimated that, globally, there were 59.5 million people displaced as a result of persecution, conflict, generalised violence or human rights violations. Of these, 19.5 million were classed as refugees (i.e. outside their country of origin), 38.2 million as internally displaced, and about 1.8 million were asylum seekers. To those numbers must be added those economic migrants who pose as humanitarian cases. A large fraction of the million-plus individuals who entered Europe in 2015 during the Syrian crisis were not from Syria, but from Africa, Lebanon, Afghanistan, even as far away as Pakistan.

This continuing humanitarian disaster confronts those with good will. Given that resources are limited, should a tiny number of cases be raised to the pinnacle of living conditions offered by citizenship in a first world economy, or should a much larger number, many hundreds of times larger, be given emergency aid in or near their countries of origin. Australian governments have adopted the first option, the luxury option, at the cost of abandoning millions to their fate and diminishing the security and cohesion of their own society.

Where legally feasible, recent refugee intakes should be reversed, with individuals who have not yet become citizens being placed overseas by a dedicated bureaucracy. A truly humanitarian program must take into account the security, prosperity and unity of the Australian people.



[i], accessed 19 Feb. 2016.

[ii] Salter, F. K., Ed. (2002). Risky transactions. Trust, kinship, and ethnicity. Oxford and New York, Berghahn.

Salter, F. K., Ed. (2004). Welfare, ethnicity, & altruism: New data & evolutionary theory. London, Frank Cass.

Salter, F. K. (2008). “Westermarck’s altruism: Charity releasers, moral emotions, and the welfare ethic.” Politics and the Life Sciences 27(2): 28-46.

See Frank Salter’s experience and publications at:

[iii] World Refugee Survey, US Committee for Refugees, 1986. As reported by John Masanauskas (1990). “What to do with the world’s refugees?”, The Age, 14 June.

[iv] Smith, A. D. (1986). The ethnic origins of nations. Oxford, Basil Blackwell, pp. 22-30.

[v] Salter, F. K. (2016). Germany’s jeopardy: Could the immigrant influx “end European civilization”?, Social Technologies,, 6 January.

[vi] Putnam, R. D. (2007). “E Pluribus Unum: Diversity and community in the twenty-first century. The 2006 Johan Skytte Prize lecture.” Scandinavian Political Studies 30: 137-174.

[vii] Laurence, J. and L. Bentley (2015). “Does ethnic diversity have a negative effect on attitudes towards the community? A longitudinal analysis of the causal claims within the ethnic diversity and social cohesion debate.” European Sociological Review.

[viii] Salter (2002; 2004), op cit.

[ix] Leigh, A. (2006). “Diversity, trust and redistribution.” Dialogue: Academy of Social Sciences in Australia 25(3): 43-49.

The finding was confirmed by:

Healy, E. (2007). “Ethnic diversity and social cohesion in Melbourne.” People and Place 15(4): 49-64.

[x] Markus, Andrew (2012). 2012 Scanlon Survey, Local Areas Report, p. 21.

[xi] Salter, F. K. (2014). Section 18C, multiculturalism and power. Quadrant Online.

[xii] The regular immigration program is more amenable to national interests despite serious shortcomings. New Zealand immigrants enter freely with minimal screening, due to the special relationship between the two countries. The growing social and economic incompatibilities of Pacific Islanders in Australia originates from this lack of selection. Another deficiency in the regular immigration program is that the points-based component of the general intake has been reduced in favour of employer nominations, which opens the process to corruption. See:

Birrell, B., E. Healy, et al. (2011). Immigration and the resources boom mark 2. Melbourne, Centre for Population and Urban Research: 49 pp.,

Also, many skilled migrants from non-English speaking countries (NESC) are slow to find employment in their fields of specialization. Indeed, a major component of the NESC program, students who have studied in Australia, are the least successful in finding employment in their professions. See:

Birrell, B. and E. Healy (2008). “How are skilled migrants doing?” People and Place 16(1): Supplement, 19 pp.

[xiii] Rummel, R. J. (1997). “Is collective violence correlated with social pluralism?”Journal of Peace Research 34(3): 163-176.

[xiv] Most Pacific Islanders come to Australia from New Zealand, and thus are not screened for economic or social compatibility.

[xv] Martin Chulov, “Rape menace from the melting pot”, The Weekend Australian, 18-19 August 2001.

[xvi] Dan Box, “Police set sights on extremist risk in regional migrant communities”, The Australian, 13 Aug. 2015, p. 7., accessed 24 Feb. 2016.

[xvii] 2012 Scanlon Survey, Local Areas Report, p. 30.

[xviii] Young, G. (2015). Australian attitudes to immigration. Brisbane, Australian Institute for Progress: 33 pp.,, p. 22. Accessed 20 March 2016.

[xix] 2014 Scanlon Local Area Survey, p. 4.

[xx] Sheridan, G. (2011). How I lost faith in multiculturalism. The Australian. Sydney, News Limited.

[xxi] Anthony Klan, “Ethnic push to boost race hate laws”, The Australian, 2 Oct. 2015, p. 2., accessed 24 Feb. 2016.

[xxii] O’Sullivan, J. (2012). “The burden of durable asset acquisition in growing populations.” Economic Affairs(February): 31-37.

O’Sullivan, J. (2015). Submission to the Productivity Commission’s Inquiry into migrant intake into Australia. Brisbane,

[xxiii] Discussion paper: Australian citizenship – Your right, your responsibility.

[xxiv] 2014 Scanlon Local Area Survey, op cit., p. 4.

[xxv] Volunteers decline for the first time: Australian Bureau of Statistics”, SMH 3 July 2015.–australian-bureau-of-statistics-20150703-gi47cw.html

[xxvi] Salter, F. K. (2015). Towards a Ministry of Emigration – Australian citizenship and domestic terrorism. Submission to government inquiry into Citizenship Policy, conducted by the Department of Immigration and Border Protection. Canberra,

[xxvii] Khalid Koser (2015). “Australia and the 1951 Refugee Convention” Lowy Institute for International Policy. 30 April., accessed 20 March 2016.

[xxviii] Jared Owens, “Public input invited on refugee intake size”, The Australian, 18 Feb. 2016, p. 5.

[xxix] Owens, op cit.

[xxx], accessed 19 Feb. 2016.

The 2015 submission:

One-sided advocacy is also evident in its 2001 submission: file:///C:/Users/Frank/Desktop/http—, accessed 19 Feb. 2016.

[xxxi], accessed 19 Feb. 2016.

[xxxii], accessed 19 Feb. 2016.

Refugee Council of Australia Financial Statements for year ended June 2015:, accessed 19 Feb. 2016.

[xxxiii] Refugee Council of Australia Annual Report 1014/15, pp. 13-14., accessed 19 Feb. 2016.

[xxxiv] The count is based on organisations’ names.

[xxxv] Questions asked of the public by the government’s briefing paper.

  1. In your view, how many places should Australia attribute to the offshore component of its Humanitarian Programme?
  2. What do you think should be the proportion split between the Special Humanitarian Programme and Refugee categories in the offshore component of its Humanitarian Programme?
  3. To which regions (Africa, Asia or Middle East) do you think most places should be allocated?
  4. In your view, how important is the Woman at Risk programme?
  5. Should the available places under the Community Proposal Pilot be increased?
  6. Do you have other comments, particularly on the offshore component of the 2016-17 Programme?

[xxxvi] Reforming the 1951 Refugee Convention is proposed by Koser, op cit.

Constraints on human behavior and the biological nature of man

Frank Salter, 18 March 2016.  The following letter from 1992 had scholarly import but was never published. It reveals some of the nature-nurture debate that has taken place in the specialised field of legal behaviour, in particular with regard to human evolution, innate behaviour, and ethology. The debate continues, though legal studies continues to deny the relevance of biology, as do the humanities and soft social sciences (sociology, cultural anthropology, political science). At the time Hubert Markl (1938-2015) was president of the Max Planck Society, Germany’s peak scientific research organisation, at which I was undertaking post-doctoral research.  My letter responded to the following publication:

Markl, H. (1983). Constraints on human behavior and the biological nature of man. Law, Biology and Culture. The Evolution of Law. M. Gruter and P. Bohannan. Santa Barbara, Ross-Erikson: 90-100.


Prof. Dr. Hubert Markl
Department of Biology
University of Konstanz, Germany

26 Oct. 1992

Dear Prof. Markl,

I’ve just read your chapter “Constraints on human behavior and the biological nature of man” in Gruter and Bohannan (1983), Law, Biology and Culture. The Evolution of Law. In that chapter you argue against the usefulness of biological approaches to the study of legal behaviour. I am working in this area of research and am interested to know whether you still hold the views expressed in that paper.

In case your position is unchanged, let me be so bold as to offer a critique of your paper.

You consider biological contributions to the analysis of legal behaviour to be limited in principle for three reasons. Each of these reasons contains theoretically-based insights which do demonstrate limitations. Of particular power is your refutation of sweeping, general claims by sociobiologists and other evolutionists regarding the innateness of normative and legal behaviour. However, it seems to me that the three points fail to show an overall limitation of biology, broadly defined. Taking each point in turn:

(1) (From your abstract) “Since laws are cognitive constructs of the human mind which must be verbalized to become effective, man is the only species in which legal behaviour can be studied. All inferences from animal behaviour studies and from evolutionary considerations are highly speculative with respect to human legal behaviour.”

It is true that laws are cognitive constructs. Indeed it is appropriate, I think, to see laws as a form of social technology. As such they are not (biologically) evolved individual or social characteristics. And since non-human species do [NOT] have such techniques for formulating social rules, in this sense no cross-species comparison is possible. We cannot compare the legal cultures of, say, chimpanzee and human societies. However, these facts leave considerable room for biological contributions to the analysis of components of legal behaviour which are shared with other species.

Mechanisms of rule-governed behaviour are amenable to cross-species comparisons. Rule behaviour need not involve explicit formulation of rules. Members of a group which is delineated in a dominance hierarchy are displaying a capacity for learning and following rules, since a dominance relationship involves learning from experiences of conflict and applying that knowledge to managing relationship in subsequent interactions. More generally, a great number of species are capable of displaying (and inferring) rules of reinforcement and aversiveness, as countless Pavlovian/Skinnerian experiments have shown. Closer to home, primate studies have shown that chimpanzees and some cercopithecines are capable of inferring complex rules in social relationships. A well known example is Franz de Waal’s (Waal 1982; Waal 1986) studies of chimpanzees, in which he found that mature males used strategic alliances to manage dominance relations. Further, alpha males would establish and enforce self-serving (though unspoken) rules, such as: you must not groom that male!

Triadic dominance has clear application to institutions, particularly to their legal culture. It is no coincidence that all laws specify punishments for violators. In societies with sufficient surplus for group task specialization (ie. civilizations) laws are monitored and enforced by police and judiciary. This legal apparatus is only present in human societies but the behavioural mechanisms, at least as they involve dominance, appear to be comparable. (Of course there are other behavioural and motivational factors: conscience, habit, economics.) Comparison is particularly valuable when it is realized that hunter-collector societies, despite possessing speech and thus being able to articulate rules, lack a legal apparatus. In place of police and judiciary, rules are enforced face-to-face using mechanisms of dominance and affiliation, in a manner comparable to hunter-collector groups of other species.

While it is true that legal systems are not natural, the entities (humans) they manipulate are, and the cues which act to limit and coordinate human behaviour must be simulacra of evolved social signals. That is why the science of social signalling, ethology and biologically-oriented social psychology, are especially well suited to the analysis of legal systems.

(2) “In the ontogenetic development of human behaviour there is adaptation of the behaviour to the environment, including culture. There seems no reliable procedure to factor out their relative contribution, particularly since genetic adaptation can be easily phenocopied. Therefore it is only rarely possible to separate a ‘biological’ component of human behaviour from a ‘cultural’ one.”

With regard to your second point about ontogeny, it would seem that advances in method and theory are overtaking the difficulties of untangling nature from nurture in legal behaviour. Behavioural genetics and behavioural endocrinology are delineating heritable and developmental predictors of crime-related behaviours such as alcohol abuse as well as counter-intuitive characteristics such as political preferences and types of rule-breaking such as petty theft and violence (Bohman, Cloninger et al. 1982; Gabrielli and Mednick 1983; Brennan, Mednick et al. 1986; Ellis 1986; Martin, Eaves et al. 1986; Bain, Langevin et al. 1987; Dabbs, Frady et al. 1987; Mednick, Gabrielli et al. 1987; Dabbs, Ruback et al. 1988; Moffitt and Mednick 1988; Fishbein 1990; Ellis 1991) . The emerging lesson is not the naive one that criminality and lawful conduct are inborn, but that legal regimes set environmental conditions which filter out and classify as criminal categories of people based on their patterns of behaviour which sometimes have biological correlates (eg. propensity to include violence in one’s repertoire of aggressive behaviour rather than verbal insult).

(3) Most theories pertaining to the evolution of behaviour in animals (and more so in man) are ‘weak’ theories with some retrodictive but little predictive power; they allow us to define probable modes for behavioral averages but say little about the behaviour of individuals, which is at issue in legal considerations.”

Any theory which successfully predicts average behaviour must be of relevance to law makers and law enforcement agencies. It follows that the biological study of emotions which finds cross-cultural universals in emotional experience and expression (Izard 1979; Fridlund and Izard 1983; Izard, Kagan et al. 1984; Ekman 1989; Izard 1990) has a contribution to make to legislators and administrators everywhere.

In conclusion, imagine for the sake of argument that there are no innate predispositions for law-abidingness or criminality, that human social behaviour is effectively plastic or culture-based. That would certainly limit the applicability of biological theories of legal behaviour as a special category of behaviour. But it would still leave a major role for biology in analyzing the underlying learning process, its physiological (psychobiological) underpinnings, and at the evolutionary level, the phylogeny of behavioural plasticity. In one sense there would be no such thing as a biology of legal behaviour per se. But the same could be said for any basic discipline: there can be no sociology or psychology of legal behaviour because those disciplines can be applied to any number of social phenomena. On the contrary, we find it sensible to speak of a sociological and a psychological approach to jurisprudence. By analogy, at the minimum, there must be a substantial role for biology in studying legal behaviour as well as other deliberate, planned social phenomena.

But biology’s role is more particular in its relevance to law than that. The basic motivational and emotional mechanisms of rule-governed, including normative, behaviour are species specific, as are the physiological mechanisms and primary expression clusters by which they are signalled. Legal culture varies between societies, but the behavioural building blocks from which these diverse systems are constructed are universal. The architectural analogy can be carried further. The limited variety of building materials is reflected in the limited variety of legal systems. There are many different punishment mechanisms in use, but all systems rely on punishment of one kind or another and to some degree. Likewise, conscience or internalized norms is universal, at least to stable systems.

I hope I haven’t strained your busy schedule too much with this lengthy letter.

Yours sincerely, Frank Salter



Bain, J., R. Langevin, et al. (1987). Sex hormones in murderers and assaulters. Behavioral Science and the Law, 5, 95-101.

Bohman, M., C. . Cloninger, et al. (1982). Predisposition to petty criminality in Swedish adoptees 1. Genetic and environmental heterogeneity. Archives of General Psychiatry, 39, 1233-1241.

Brennan, P., S. A. Mednick, et al. (1986). Congenital determinants of violent and property offending. In The Development and Treatment of Childhood Aggression, (ed. D. Pepler), Erlbaum, New York.

Dabbs, J. M., R. L. Frady, et al. (1987). Saliva testosterone and criminal violence in young adult prison inmates. Psychosomatic Medicine, 49, 174-182.

Dabbs, J. M., R. B. Ruback, et al. (1988). Saliva testosterone and criminal violence among women. Personality and Individual Differences, 9, 269-75.

Ekman, P. (1989). The argument and evidence about universals in facial expressions of emotion. In Handbook of Social Psychophysiology, (ed. H. Wagner and A. Manstead), pp. 143-164. Wiley, New York.

Ellis, L. (1986). Evolution and the nonlegal equivalents of aggressive criminal behavior. Aggressive Behavior, 12, 57-71.

Ellis, L. (1991). Monoamine oxidase and criminality: Identifying an apparent biological marker for antisocial behavior. Journal of Research in Crime and Delinquency, 28, 227-251.

Fishbein, D. H. (1990). Biological Perspectives in Criminology. Criminology, 28, 27-72.

Fridlund, A. J. and C. E. Izard (1983). Electromyographic studies of facial expressions of emotions and patterns of emotion. In Social Psychophysiology: A Sourcebook, (ed. J. T. Cacioppo and R. E. Petty), pp. 243-86. Guilford Press, New York.

Gabrielli, W. F. J. and S. A. Mednick (1983). Genetic correlates of criminal behavior. American Behavioral Scientist, 27, 59-74.

Izard, C., E. J. Kagan, et al. (1984). Emotions, Cognition, and Behavior, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge.

Izard, C. E. (1979). Expression of emotions as a transcultural language in social interaction and theatrical performance. In Aspects of Nonverbal Communication, (ed. W. von Raffler-Engle), Swets & Zeitlinger, Amsterdam.

Izard, C. E. (1990). Facial expressions and the regulation of emotions. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 58, 487-489.

Martin, N. G., L. J. Eaves, et al. (1986). Transmission of social attitudes. Proceedings of the National Academy of Science, 83, 4364-4368.

Mednick, S. A., W. F. Gabrielli, et al. (1987). Genetic factors in the etiology of criminal behavior. In The Causes of Crime, (ed. S. A. Mednick, T. E. Moffitt and S. A. Stack), Cambridge University Press, Cambridge.

Moffitt, T. E. and S. A. Mednick, Ed. (1988). Biological Contributions to Crime Causation. Martinus Nijhoff. Dordrecht, The Netherlands.

Waal, F. B. M. d. (1982). Chimpanzee Politics: Power and Sex Among Apes, Jonathan Cape, London.

Waal, F. B. M. d. (1986). The integration of dominance and social bonding in primates. Quarterly Review of biology, 61, 459-479.

Deutschlands Wagnis: Könnte der Zustrom an Immigranten „Das Ende der europäischen Zivilisation“ sein?

Following is the German translation of “Germany’s Jeopardy”:



Einleitung: Düstere Vorhersagen

Sozialer Konflikt

Mehr Verbrechen

Verringerte Sozialleistungen

Größere ethnische Ungleichheit

Rassisch verformte Politik

Eingeschränkte Bürgerrechte

Nutzen? Argumente für offene Grenzen

Ergebnis: Wagnis. Wird Europa überleben?


Einleitung: Düstere Vorhersagen

Mein Name ist Frank Salter. Ich bin ein australischer Ethologe. Dies bedeutet, dass ich biologische Ansätze in die Untersuchung von Gesellschaft und Politik mit einbeziehe. Ich habe einen Großteil meiner Karriere mit Forschungen an einem Max Planck Institut in Deutschland und mit Lehre dort, in anderen europäischen Ländern und in den USA verbracht. Eines meiner Forschungsgebiete ist ethnische Solidarität und Konflikt sowie die Art und Weise wie dieses Phänomen demokratische Sozialstaaten beeinflusst.

In diesem Vortrag diskutiere ich die düsteren Vorhersagen, die über den massiven Zustrom an Immigranten und Flüchtlingen gemacht worden, welche derzeit noch immer nach Deutschland und in andere europäische Länder aus dem Mittleren Osten, Afrika und Asien einreisen. Viele von ihnen schwärmen nach der Einreise aus und überqueren die alten europäischen Ländergrenzen, welche aufgrund der Schengen-Abkommen nicht mehr bewacht werden. Trotz der Welle guten Willens und Gastfreundschaft, die von Millionen Deutschen und anderen Europäern gezeigt wurde, glauben einige, dass diese Situation zum Ende der europäischen Zivilisation führen könnte. Diese Vorhersagen wurden nicht nur von fremdenfeindlichen Ideologen sondern auch von moderaten Politkern gemacht.

Ein Beispiel ist Tony Abbot, bis vor kurzem der Premierminister Australiens. Bei einer Ansprach in London forderte er die Europäer auf ihre Grenzen zu schließen um einen „katastrophalen Fehler“ zu vermeiden. Er stellte fest, dass der Schutz der Grenzen „einiger Gewalt benötigen wird; er wird massive Logistik und Ausgaben benötigen; er wird an unserem Gewissen nagen – nichtsdestotrotz ist dies der einzige Weg um eine menschliche Welle daran zu hindern sich durch Europa zu ergießen und es vielleicht für immer zu verändern.“ [i]

Eigenartigerweise erklären weder Abbot noch andere Kommentatoren, wieso dieser Zustrom so schädlich sein wird. Das gleiche gilt für Angela Merkels Argument für die Öffnung der Grenzen. Wo war hier die nüchterne Analyse und transparente Beurteilung von Kosten und Nutzen?

In diesem Vortrag versuche ich eine Beurteilung, indem ich Forschungen nachvollziehe, die sich mit der Art und Weise befassen, in welcher ethnische Vielfalt dazu tendiert, sozialen Konflikt und Kriminalität zu vergrößern, soziale Sicherungssysteme zu untergraben, ethnische Ungleichheit zu verschlimmern und bürgerliche Freiheiten auszuhöhlen. Ich vergleiche dann diese Kosten mit den Vorteilen massenhafter Immigration aus der Dritten Welt, die von Angela Merkel und ihren Unterstützern geltend gemacht werden.

Sozialer Konflikt

Tragische Ereignisse in jüngster Zeit, die Angriffe in Paris inklusive, lassen Terrorismus als die offensichtlichste und nächst liegende Bedrohung erscheinen. Die überwiegende Mehrheit der Ankömmlinge sind Muslime. Obwohl die meisten Muslime keine Terroristen sind, sind viel Terroristen Muslime. Generell erhöht zunehmende ethnische Vielfalt die Chance, dass die Eine oder Andere Minderheit die Außenpolitik der Regierung ablehnen wird. Tragödien sind das Ergebnis, wenn auch nur eine kleine Gruppe unzufriedener Individuen Gewalt anwendet.

Allerdings ist Terrorismus höchstwahrscheinlich nicht der wesentliche Schaden, der aus der gegenwärtigen Immigration folgen wird. Der wesentliche Effekt wird das Zerbrechen der psychologischen Bindungen der Nationalität sein, wodurch die Staatsbürgerschaft zu einem ausgehöhlten Legalismus wird. Dies ist so, weil zunehmende ethnische Vielfalt nicht nur mit Gewalt wie Terrorismus und Bürgerkrieg assoziiert wird, sondern mit einem generellen Verlust an sozialem Zusammenhalt. Aber beginnen wir mit der Gewalt.

Fakten aus zahlreichen Studien zeigen, dass umso ethnisch vielfältiger eine Gesellschaft wird, desto mehr das Konfliktrisiko zunimmt und korrespondierend das Formen von Einigkeit schwerer wird. Bürgerkrieg ist unwahrscheinlicher in homogenen Gesellschaften. Forscher haben versucht dieses Risiko zu quantifizieren.

Eine weltweite Studie von Rudolf Rummel an der University of Hawai aus den 1990ern, maß auf welche Weise 109 Größen zu extremer kollektiver Gewalt (Aufstände und Bürgerkriege) zwischen 1932 und 1982 beitrugen; das ist eine Periode von 50 Jahren. Er fand heraus, dass ein Fünftel der Variation in kollektiver Gewalt von nur einer Größe ausgelöst wurde, der Anzahl an ethnischen Gruppen in der Gesellschaft. Konflikte wurden intensiver, wenn die Konfliktparteien verschiedenen Religionen anhingen.[ii] Dieses Ergebnis ist offensichtlich relevant für die gegenwärtige Situation, in der Muslime in ein weites gehend christliches und säkulares Europa strömen.

Eine Studie gegenwärtiger Gesellschaften des finnischen Soziologen Tatu Vanhanen untersuchte ethnische Konflikte mit einer weiter gefassten Definition die Diskriminierung, ethnische Parteien und Interessengruppen, als auch ethnische Gewalt und Bürgerkrieg beinhaltete. Auf Basis evolutionärer Theorie vermutete Vanhanen, das Vielfalt eine Konfliktzunahme auslösen würde. Vanhanen fand heraus, dass unter den 176 Gesellschaften die er untersuchte 2010 zwei Drittel der Variation ethnischer Konflikte durch ethnische Vielfalt erklärt wurde.[iii] In anderen Worten, ein Großteil der Unterschiede zwischen friedlichen Ländern und solchen, die von ethnischen Konflikten gespalten werden, ist die ethnische Vielfalt letzterer.

Eine ähnliche Wirkung von Vielfalt ist verringerte Kooperation und vermindertes „soziales Kapital“, der Umfang in dem Menschen einander unterstützen. Wenn Heterogenität zunimmt, verringert sich die Mitwirkung in Vereinen und Freiwilligen Netzwerken. Menschen werden isoliert  und weniger vertrauensvoll. Diese Wirkung ist am stärksten in Stadtteilen, in denen Menschen verschiedener ethnischer Gruppen erleben.[iv] In anderen Worten: Unwissenheit oder Isolation sind nicht die Ursachen ethnischen Unfriedens, sondern Kontakt mit anderen Kulturen, also auch Ausländern die in ein Heimatterritorium in großer Zahl einreisen.

Die deutsche Regierung sollte die Tendenz ethnischer Vielfalt sozialen Konflikt auszulösen kennen, da diese Tendenz von deutschen Forschungsinstitutionen untersucht wurde. Beispielsweise haben Irenaeus Eibl-Eibesfeldt, ein Professor der Max Planck Gesellschaft und Kollegen wie  Johan van der Dennen, an der Universität von Groningen in den Niederlanden, über Jahrzehnte die Auswirkungen kultureller Vermischung auf Ethnozentrismus und Xenophobie in anonymen Massengesellschaften untersucht. Beide haben gewarnt, dass das Vermischen verschiedener Ethnien im großen Maßstab die soziale Stabilität verringert und den innergesellschaftlichen Frieden bedroht.

Einige der Untersuchungen die ich angeführt habe wurden von evolutionärer Theorie inspiriert. Dies ist ein wichtiger Ansatz der lange aus den Sozialwissenschaften ausgenommen wurde. Die menschliche Psychologie entwickelte sich im Kontext ethnisch homogener Gruppen. Aus dieser Perspektive ist die Vielfalt, die jetzt von modernen Eliten aufgezwungen wird, unnatürlich im evolutionären Zeitmaßstab. Dieses unnatürliche Maß der Vielfalt ist gemäß evolutionärer Theorie verantwortlich für einen Teil der Konflikte. Eine weitere Bestätigung  dieser evolutionären Hypothese ist die Erkenntnis, dass genetische Vielfalt (getrennt von kultureller Vielfalt) mit gesellschaftlichem Konflikt korreliert. Da ethnische Gruppen Reservoire genetischer Ähnlichkeit sind,[v] erhöht die Vermischung solcher Reservoire die genetische Variation innerhalb einer Gesellschaft und verursacht größeren gesellschaftlichen Konflikt, wie neue weltweite Forschungen zeigen.[vi]

Stärkere Ursachen als genetische Vielfalt sind kulturelle, wirtschaftliche und historische Faktoren, welche das Wohlwollen, das Deutsche, Schweden und andere Europäer syrischen Flüchtlingen 2015 entgegenbrachten, erklären. Allerdings können diese Faktoren kurzfristig beträchtlich schwanken, während es viele Generationen dauern kann, bis genetische Ungleichheiten nachlassen.

Mehr Verbrechen

Verbrechen ist ein gesellschaftlicher Konflikt, in welchem der Aggressor das Gesetz bricht. Die Bilanz von nicht-westlichen Immigranten begangener Verbrechen ist nicht beruhigend.

Ein beunruhigender Trend in Frankreich, das Europas größte muslimische Bevölkerung hat, ist die Zunahme von  sog. „no-go areas“, Gebiete die zu betreten sich selbst die Polizei nur in großen Verbänden traut. Außerdem gibt es in Frankreich und Großbritannien öfters Ausschreitungen, die so  umfassend und gewalttätig sind, dass die Polizei die Kontrolle verliert. Diese Zeiträume des Massenkonflikts entsprechen Aufständen.

Wenn sich Bevölkerungsgruppen aus weniger kompatiblen Kulturen absondern und neue Generationen heranwachsen, gibt es den Trend der Ausprägung von Parallelgesellschaften. Großzügige Sozialleistungen und Multikulturalismus verschlimmern die Kriminalität von Immigranten, die oftmals in der zweiten Generation zunimmt.

Zwischen 1997 und 2013 kam es in massivem Maßstab zu organisierter sexueller Ausbeutung weißer Mädchen in der englischen Stadt Rotherham in South Yorkshire, hauptsächlich durch muslimische Männer pakistanischer Abstammung. Bis zu 1400 Mädchen, teilweise nur 12 Jahre alt, wurden durch mehrere Männer vergewaltigt und verschleppt.

Schweden und Dänemark bieten ebenfalls einen Vorgeschmack dessen, was man in Deutschland von der Aufnahme nicht überprüfter Immigranten aus inkompatiblen Kulturen erwarten kann. Die Mehrheit der in Schweden des Mordes, der Vergewaltigung und des Raubes angeklagten Personen sind Immigranten, obwohl Immigranten nur 16 Prozent der Bevölkerung ausmachen.[vii]

Immigranten aus verschiedenen Ländern begehen in Dänemark Verbrechen mit wesentlich höherer Häufigkeit als ethnische Dänen. Das gilt besonders für Immigranten aus Afrika und dem Mittleren Osten.[viii] Die höchste Häufigkeit des Gesetzesbruchs zeigten Kinder von Immigranten aus nicht-westlichen Ländern. Personen der Altersgruppe 15-19 waren um 93 Prozent überrepräsentiert, Personen der Altersgruppe 20-29 um 130 Prozent und Personen zwischen 30 und 39 Jahren waren um 135 Prozent überrepräsentiert. Ethnische Dänen waren in allen diesen Alterskategorien unterrepräsentiert.

Für Deutschland sind Fakten zu Kriminalität weniger zugänglich, aber unbestätigte Berichte legen nahe, dass 2011 Asylbewerber 3,3 Prozent aller Verbrechen begingen, wesentlich mehr als ihr Anteil an der Bevölkerung.[ix] 2014 war diese bereits hohe Zahl auf 7,7 Prozent aller Verbrechen angewachsen. Im gleichen Zeitraum hat sich die Zahl der Angriffe und Ladendiebstähle in Deutschland mehr als verdoppelt.[x]

Verringerte Sozialleistungen

Offensichtlich wird der Zustrom von Millionen armer Menschen das Sozialbudget belasten. Europäer, die ihr ganzes Leben Sozialversicherungsbeiträge bezahlt haben, werden bald die Gesundheitsversorgung, die Unterbringung, die Arbeitslosenunterstützung und die Altersunterstützung für Millionen Personen bezahlen die nie zu diesen Versicherungen beigetragen haben. Wird der Zustrom nicht gestoppt wird dies einen astronomischen Reichtumstransfer auslösen, solange das Sozialsystem überlebt.

Es wird möglicherweise nicht lange überleben, da die europäischen Regierungen bereits hoch verschuldet sind und hohe Sozialausgaben verwalten. 2013, das letzte Jahr für das Daten zur Verfügung stehen, betrug der Anteil der Bruttostaatsschulden am Bruttoinlandsprodukt in Österreich 81%, in Belgien 104%, in Frankreich 92%, in Deutschland 77%, in Italien 128%, in Spanien 92% und im Vereinigten Königreich  87%.[xi]

In Schweden beträgt die Staatsverschuldung nur um 39% des Bruttoinlandsprodukts, aber die dortigen Immigranten aus Afrika und dem Mittleren Osten belasten das Budget. Diese Immigranten machen ca. 16% des Bevölkerung aus, beanspruchen aber 58% der Sozialausgaben. Dies ist ein großer Reichtumstransfer zu Ungunsten ethnischer Schweden.[xii] Dieser Transfer ist eine schlechte Investition da ca. 48% der Immigranten in arbeitsfähigen Alter arbeitslos sind. Sogar nach 15 Jahren im Land sind noch immer 40% arbeitslos.

Doch Sozialleistungen sind noch fragiler als diese Zahlen nahelegen.

Forschungen der deutschen Max Planck Gesellschaft legen nahe, dass ethnischer Wandel durch Immigration die Motivation der Steuerzahler wandeln wird, indem ihre Bereitschaft Sozialleistungen zu unterstützen nachlässt. Vergleiche der Sozialsysteme weltweit zeigt, dass mit der Zunahme ethnischer Vielfalt Sozialleistungen dazu neigen, zu sinken.[xiii]

Nicht nur Sozialleistungen nehmen ab, sondern alle Dienstleistungen die auf Abgaben für öffentliche Güter basieren. Dies beinhaltet die Kooperation mit der Polizei, Wohlfahrtsorganisationen, medizinische und militärische Autoritäten.

Entwicklungshilfe, die nichts anderes als internationale Sozialleistungen sind, ist sogar noch fragiler. Entwicklungshilfe steht stark in einer negativen Beziehung mit der ethnischen Vielfalt der Geberländer.[xiv]

Die Ironie könnte nicht grausamer sein. Indem europäische Länder eine große Zahl von Personen aus nicht-westlichen Kulturen aufnehmen, die danach streben von großzügigen Sozialleistungen zu profitieren, riskieren sie nicht nur den Verlust inländischer Sozialleistungen für Einheimische und Immigranten gleichermaßen sondern verringern auch die Entwicklungshilfe für die Heimatländer der Immigranten. Es ist eine „Lose-Lose“ Strategie.

Größere ethnische Ungleichheit

Ethnische Ungleichheit, eine wesentliche Ursache gesellschaftlicher Konflikte, wird als Ergebnis des gegenwärtigen Zustroms zunehmen. Wenn eine ethnische Gruppe es nicht schafft nach einigen Generationen Einkommensgleichheit zu erreichen, sind tief verinnerlichte Feindseligkeit und eine niedrige Schwelle für zivilen Ungehorsam die Folge. Dies könnte die Ursache für die höhere Kriminalität der Kinder von Immigranten verglichen mit ihren Eltern sein.

Einmal mehr gibt es keine Entschuldigung für Unwissenheit, da Deutschland einen einheimischen Lehrer für die Ursachen ethnischer Ungleichheit hat. Thilo Sarrazin war SPD-Politiker und bis 2010  Mitglied des Vorstandes der deutschen Bundesbank, das Jahr in dem er ein Buch mit dem Titel Deutschland schafft sich ab: Wie wir unser Land aufs Spiel setzen veröffentlichte.[xv] Sarrazin dokumentierte die langsame Geschwindigkeit der Integration türkischer Immigranten in die deutsche Gesellschaft und Wirtschaft, ihre unverhältnismäßige Abhängigkeit von Sozialleistungen der Regierung und ihre höhere Fruchtbarkeit. Er fand heraus, dass diese langsame Assimilation von der islamischen Religion verursacht wurde und dass schlechtere Bildungserfolge auf hartnäckige ethnische Traditionen zurückzuführen waren.[xvi] Als er dies schrieb war Angela Merkel bereits deutsche Kanzlerin. Sie verurteilte Sarrazin und befürwortete seine Entlassung aus dem Vorstand der deutschen Bundesbank, ein Omen für ihre Intoleranz und Radikalität 2015.

Es ist sicher, dass der gegenwärtige Zustrom die ethnische Schichtung in Deutschland und Europa sprunghaft ansteigen lassen wird. Wenn dies nur auf schlechte Sprachkenntnisse und unzureichende Bildung zurückzuführen wäre, könnte die Ungleichheit innerhalb einer oder zwei Generationen überwunden werden (auch dies wäre ein schrecklicher Angriff auf die Empfängerländer). Aber viele der Immigranten stammen aus Bevölkerungen mit einer langen Geschichte schlechter Bildungs- und Wirtschaftsleistungen. Dies ist vermutlich die Folge chronischer ethnischer Schichtung die an despotische Reiche erinnert.[xvii] Indem Deutschland und Europa eine neue Unterschicht importieren, schaffen sie ihre egalitären nationalen Gesellschaften ab.

Rassisch verformte Politik

Eine Politik der offenen Tür wird von selbst ernannten Antirassisten wie Angela Merkel und ihren Verbündeten in der extremen Linken vertreten. Die Protestierenden der Antifa, die PEGIDA und andere Konservative niederschreien, halten es für selbstverständlich, dass Grenzen für alle die kommen offen sein sollten. Aber ein sicheres Ergebnis des neuen Zustroms von Immigranten ist die weitere rassische Verformung der Politik und zunehmender demographischer Druck auf ethnische Europäer. Rassische Verformung wird die Form von Sektiererei, ethnischen Parteien, Multikulturalismus, Indoktrination in den Schulen, politische Korrektheit und Förderungsmaßnahmen für Minderheiten – Diskriminierung die Ergebnisse angleichen soll annehmen. Rassisch verformte Politik ist bereits eine Tatsache des Lebens in vielfältigen Gesellschaften wie Großbritannien, Frankreich, die Vereinigten Staaten und Australien.

Während der gesamten bekannten Geschichte haben Gesellschaften Immigration kontrolliert, besonders wenn es um große Zahlen ging. Die Politik der offenen Tür von Angela Merkel und Francois Hollande ist ein unverantwortliches gesellschaftliches Experiment, dass bereits eine Ermüdung des Mitleids [Compassion Fatigue, auch als secondary traumatic stress bekannt] auslöst. Nationalistische und gegen Immigration gerichtete Parteien befinden sich in Österreich, Belgien, Großbritannien, Dänemark, Frankreich, Griechenland,  Ungarn, Italien, Polen, der Slowakei, Schweden und in der Schweiz im Aufstieg.

Die weiter oben diskutierte ethnische Ungleichheit ist eine wichtige Ursache rassischer Verformung [von Politik]. Arme Immigrantengruppen, speziell solche die kulturell oder rassisch sichtbar sind, werden  in der zweiten Generation empfänglich für Radikalisierung durch Ideologien die ihre Beschwerden legitimieren. Diese Ideologien helfen Immigranten ihren niedrigen sozioökonomischen Status und ihr Gefühl der Entfremdung zu rationalisieren, indem sie diese zu Opfern von weißen Rassismus erklären. Diese Ideologien werden aus Universitäten, aus Schulen, aus den Medien, von Sozialarbeitern, von Politikern und ethnischen Führern übernommen.

Opferideologien erzeugen zudem Angst und Schuldgefühle in Weißen, indem sie ihre ethnische Identitäten – und nur ihre ethnischen Identitäten – mit Extremismus und Faschismus verbinden.[xviii] Dies ist unfair, da weiße Mehrheiten meist weniger ethnozentrisch sind als Minderheiten.

Der Mythos der Opferrolle von Minderheiten konditioniert die weiße Mehrheit Immigration in einem Umfang das zum Bevölkerungsaustausch ausreicht zu akzeptieren. Diese Doktrinen waren in englisch-sprachigen Ländern und weiten Teilen Westeuropas seit der Kulturrevolution der 1960er und 1970er einflussreich.

Währenddessen hat Einwanderungspolitik in Deutschland den undemokratischen Politikmodus ausgelöst, der in westlichen Ländern für ethnische Politik typisch ist. Es ist kein Referendum geplant um Deutschen eine Wahl bezüglich ihrem Schicksal zu geben. Mit wenigen Ausnahmen haben Bürger noch nicht einmal die Möglichkeit gegen die Politik der offenen Tür abzustimmen, da  die großen Parteien  offene Grenzen unterstützen. Deutsche, die ein Mitspracherecht in der Einwanderungsdebatte haben wollen, müssen für neue Parteien stimmen, die noch nicht von Interessengruppen [special interests] übernommen worden sind.

Eingeschränkte Bürgerrechte

Zunehmende Vielfalt unterhöhlt Bürgerrechte. Wo immer die ursprünglich staatsbildende ethnische Gruppe die Kontrolle über Immigration  verloren hat, geraten Regierungen unter den Druck der politischen Linken und ihrer Wähler in den Minderheiten sog. Hatespeech [politisch inkorrekte freie Meinungsäußerung] zu unterdrücken, wobei Hatespeech auch Meinungen und Fakten beinhalten kann. Die Einschränkung der freien Meinungsäußerung geht der Zunahme der Immigration im Verdrängungsmaßstab [replacement level immigration] voraus und hilft diese auszulösen. Sie ist aber sicher auch eine Folge von Vielfalt.

Einschränkungen der Meinungsäußerung haben eine abschreckende Wirkung auf die öffentliche Debatte. Die Millionen, die jetzt nach Deutschland und Europa fluten, sind Begünstigte dieser Unterdrückung. Ihre Anwesenheit wird den Druck auf Regierungen hart gegen beunruhigte Einheimische vorzugehen nur noch vergrößern. Die dem harten Durchgreifen zugrunde liegende Ursache, wird die Zunahme massiven endemischen gesellschaftlichen Konflikts sein. Ein gesellschaftlicher Konflikt der komplett vorhersagbar ist und tatsächlich von Sozialwissenschaftlern vorhergesagt wurde.

Nutzen? Argumente für offene Grenzen

Werden diese Kosten vom Nutzen, den Angela Merkel und ihre Unterstützer anführen, überwogen? Sechs Argumente wurden angeführt um Deutsche zu überzeugen den Zustrom hinzunehmen.

1. Das erste Argument ist Merkels Behauptung, dass Deutschland und Europa moralisch verpflichtet sind echte Flüchtlinge anzusiedeln. Es gibt offensichtlich eine moralische Pflicht zu helfen, aber das Argument, dass Flüchtlinge in Europa angesiedelt werden müssen scheitert aus zwei einfachen Gründen. Erstens sind viele der Ankommenden keine Flüchtlinge sondern wirtschaftliche Immigranten. Zweitens folgt aus den hohen Kosten die der Zustrom für einheimische Deutsche verursacht, dass eine moralische Politik die Interessen beider Seiten optimieren muss und nicht das Wohlergehen der Immigranten auf Kosten der gastgebenden Gesellschaft maximiert. Schließlich ist die erste Pflicht von Regierungen in Demokratien ihre Wähler zu beschützen. Deutschland und die EU könnten Flüchtlingen in oder nahe ihren eigenen Ländern helfen.

2. Das zweite Argument ist Merkels Behauptung, dass Deutschland profitieren wird, indem es ein und für alle mal das Erbe des Nazismus abwirft. Dies ist ein abscheuliches Argument, da Deutsche unschuldig am Völkermord sind, es sei denn man akzeptiert die nationalsozialistische Doktrin rassischer Kollektivschuld. Die entgegengesetzte Wirkung ist wahrscheinlicher. Die Verunglimpfung ethnischer Deutscher könnte zunehmen, da Merkel eine neue Ära rassisch verformter Politik ausgelöst hat, in der Befürworter von massenhafter Immigration aus der Dritten Welt den Opferrollen Narrativ nutzen wird um die Mehrheit zum Schweigen zu bringen.

3. Das dritte Argument wurde vom deutschen Innenminister Mitte September 2015 ausgesprochen.[xix] Er behauptete, dass die Regierung keine Wahl hätte außer jede Anzahl an Flüchtlingen anzunehmen, da Artikel 16a, Paragraph 1 des deutschen Grundgesetzes aussagt, dass „Personen die aus politischen Gründen verfolgt werden Asyl erhalten sollen.“ Dies ist ein strikt legalistisches Argument, da, wie wir gesehen haben, es keine moralische Pflicht gibt eine große Zahl an Flüchtlingen in Deutschland anzusiedeln. Lassen sie uns einen genaueren Blick auf das Gesetz werfen. Paragraph 2 des Artikels 16a des Grundgesetzes präzisiert, das Paragraph 1 nicht auf Personen zutrifft, welche die Bundesrepublik „aus einem Mitgliedsstaat der Europäischen Gemeinschaft“ betreten. [xx] Die überwiegende Mehrheit der Flüchtlinge die Deutschland betreten sind durch andere EU Staaten gekommen. Deutschland hatte das Recht sie an der Einreise zu hindern, aber die Regierung Merkel setzte die Dublin Regelung aus, die verlangt, das Asylbewerber in das europäische Land ihrer Erstankunft zurückgeführt werden.[xxi] Wie konnte Deutschland das EU-Gesetz ursprünglich annehmen wenn es seinem Grundgesetz widersprach? Wie konnte die Dublin Regelung so einfach ausgesetzt werden, wenn sie andererseits dem Artikel 16a des Grundgesetzes entspricht?[xxii] Offensichtlich können Deutschland und die EU legal ihre Grenzen beschützen. Es sind Merkel und andere führende Politiker der EU die den Zustrom erlaubt haben, nicht irgendein Gesetz.

4. Das vierte Argument wurde von Merkel und dem Vorstandsvorsitzenden von Mercedes Dieter Zetsche vorgebracht, der behauptete, dass Flüchtlinge zu produktiven Arbeitern werden würden. Zetsche sagte: „Sie könnten wie die Gastarbeiter vor einigen Jahrzehnten uns helfen unseren Wohlstand zu erhalten und zu mehren. Deutschland kann schließlich nicht mehr alle verfügbaren Arbeitsstellen besetzen.“ Dies ist eine utopische Spekulation, die der bisherigen Erfahrung und unserem Wissen über kulturelle Unterschiede widerspricht. Es ist wahrscheinlicher, dass Deutschland mit Gemeinschaften von Immigranten belastet wird die an hoher Arbeitslosigkeit leiden und in unqualifizierten Berufen mit niedriger Produktivität konzentriert sind.

5. Das fünfte Argument ist sogar noch radikaler. Es wurde vom Demographen Stephan Sievert vom Berlin-Institut für Bevölkerung und Entwicklung vorgebracht. Sievert äußerte sich optimistisch, dass Deutschlands Bevölkerung zumindest nach Jahrzehnten der Stagnation wieder wuchs.[xxiii] Sievert gibt nicht zu, dass die von ihm angedeutete Politik die rasante demographische Verdrängung der deutschen ethnischen Familie mit sich bringt, effektiv ein schrittweiser kultureller Völkermord. Hätte das deutsche Volk die Möglichkeit über diese Politik abzustimmen würde eventuell eine Mehrheit dem deutschen Autor Botho Strauss zustimmen, der ausführte, dass er es vorzieht unter seinem eigenen Volk zu leben, selbst wenn es schrumpft, als unter einem erzwungenen kulturellen Mix zu leben.[xxiv]

6. Ein sechstes Argument wurde von Merkel in ihrer Neujahrsansprache für 2016 angeführt. Es handelt sich um das offene Grenzen Mantra, dass Immigration generell gut ist. Merkel sagte, dass: „Länder immer von erfolgreicher Immigration profitiert hätten, sowohl wirtschaftlich als auch gesellschaftlich.“[xxv] Es ist ein Zeichen für Gefahr wenn hoch gebildete Personen auf Tautologien zurückgreifen, wie eben, dass erfolgreiche Immigration erfolgreich ist. Tatsächlich sind Einwanderungsgesellschaften – Amerika, Australien, Kanada, die Niederlande, Frankreich und andere – weit in dem Prozess fortgeschritten ihre Gründungskulturen zu Minderheiten zu machen, ohne ihnen eine demokratische Wahl zu lassen. Merkel folgte zudem der üblichen Pro-Immigrationsargumentation, indem sie ihre Kritiker der „Kälte oder sogar des Hasses“ bezichtigte, womit sie nahe legte von wärmeren Emotionen motiviert zu sein. Zudem deutete sie eine neue umfassende Definition dessen an, was es bedeutet Deutsch zu sein, ein kluger Schachzug für eine Person die zu einer demographischen Transformation entschlossen ist. Bei diesen letzten Äußerungen wurden andere Elemente des Pro-Immigrationsmantras ausgelassen die aber sicherlich bald folgen werden, wie das Vielfalt Stärke ist, oder das deutsche Identität das gleiche wie die deutsche Staatsbürgerschaft ist, oder das Schulkinder zu Toleranz erzogen werden müssen, oder das Immigranten die deutsche Kultur vor einseitiger kultureller Verarmung bewahren. Diese Argumente und Behauptungen sind vollkommen normal in westlichen Gesellschaften, deren politische Klassen sie der Massenimmigration geöffnet haben.

Diese sechs angeblichen Vorteile massiver, ungefilterter Immigration sind typisch für das intellektuelle Level von Argumenten für offene Grenzen in anderen westlichen Ländern. Das derartige oberflächliche und manchmal verlogene Rhetorik von intelligenten Individuen geäußert wird, wäre ohne ihr Beinahe-Monopol über den Medienzugang, infolge ideologischer Intoleranz, die offene Debatten seit Jahrzehnten unterdrückt, unmöglich.

Ergebnis: Wagnis. Wird Europa überleben?

Das bis hierher überprüfte Beweismaterial legt nahe, dass ernste Warnungen nicht übertrieben sind. Die ethnische Transformation die jetzt Deutschland und dem Rest Europas von ihren politischen Klassen aufgezwungen wird, wird, falls man sie fortsetzt, die europäische Kultur und die europäische Lebensweise stark schädigen. Gegenargumente hierzu sind fadenscheinig und scheitern komplett daran sich mit den Risiken auseinanderzusetzen. Kommentatoren übertreiben nicht, wenn sie warnen, dass die Europäische Zivilisation, das Ergebnis von drei Jahrtausenden kultureller Evolution, in Gefahr ist.

Hoffentlich setzt sich der gesunde Menschenverstand durch so das Journalisten und Politiker respektvoll den Sorgen und Erwartungen der Bevölkerung zuhören. Vielleicht erholen sich Merkel und Hollande von ihrer moralischen Manie und befreien sich von Interessengruppen [special interests] lange genug um die Flut zurückgehen zu lassen. Vielleicht wird die EU eine konservative Immigrationspolitik formulieren, die nicht vor allem den Interessen von Immigranten, Minderheiten und der Wirtschaft dient, sondern auch die Europäer respektiert, indem sie ihre Identitäten, ihre Kulturen, ihren inneren [domestic] Frieden, Gleichheit und nationalen Zusammenhalt bewahrt. Es ist wahrscheinlicher, dass statt der intellektuell korrupten politischen Klasse die Wähler das Problem lösen werden und dass neue Parteien die Macht erhalten werden die nationale Souveränität vom gescheiterten EU Projekt zurückzuerobern. In diesem Fall wird die EU zusammenbrechen, sobald einzelne Nationen Schritte ergreifen sich vor dem Schengen-Abkommen zu schützen, das jetzt mehr eine tödliche Bedrohung anstatt einer Verheißung ist. Dies könnte die Grundlage einer neuen Trans-Europäischen Bewegung sein, welche die Identitäten und Lebensweisen individueller Nationen und Europas als Ganzem beschützt.

Doch bisher waren diese Erwägungen Angela Merkel und ihren Unterstützern fremd. Sie verkauft ihre Politik der offenen Tür als humanitäre Maßnahme. Doch in Wahrheit ist dies eine grausame Politik die höchstwahrscheinlich Leiden in Deutschland und Europa herbeiführen wird. Sie hat darin versagt die Interessen einzelner europäischer Nationen oder Europas als Ganzem in Betracht zu ziehen. Die europäische politische Klasse hat effektiv die aggressivste Form des Multikulturalismus gewählt, in welcher die Elite eine Allianz mit Minderheiten eingeht um die Mehrheit zu beherrschen.

Die Leiden, welche die Politik der offenen Tür herbeiführen wird – die Ungleichheit, inklusive des besonderen Übels der ethnischen Schichtung, der Zusammenbruch des Sozialstaates, die Kriminalität, die Elendsviertel und No-Go-Areas, die Erniedrigung der Frauen, die rassische Verformung der Politik, das Sinken der Löhne, der Verlust an nationalem Zusammenhalt, das zunehmende Gefühl des Verlustes und der Entfremdung unter Deutschen und Immigranten gleicher maßen, die beschleunigte Verdrängung von Europäern in ihren alten Heimatländern, die Beschränkung der Bürgerrechte und das allgegenwärtige Chaos – all dies wird Generationen währen.

Merkel ist in doppeltem Sinne grausam, da sie Entwicklungsländer ihrer gebildeteren und unternehmerisch begabteren Bürger beraubt. Der unausweichliche Rückgang europäischer Entwicklungshilfe, ausgelöst durch die Stagnation europäischer Wirtschaften und einem Verlust an sozialem Kapital, wird armen Ländern weltweit schaden.

Eine verantwortungsvolle Politik würde der britischen Strategie ähneln, Flüchtlingen in oder nahe bei ihren eigenen Ländern zu helfen, während gleichzeitig die Immigration nach Europa beschränkt wird. Es sollte allerdings festgehalten werden, dass in Großbritannien die Immigration durch andere Personengruppen als Flüchtlingen außer Kontrolle ist.

Die Situation in Deutschland ist trotz des gegenwärtig niedrigen Maßes an Vielfalt bedrohlicher aufgrund Deutschlands giftiger politischer Kultur. Deutschlands Chancen auf Erholung – was bedeutet eine tragfähige Immigrationspolitik durchzusetzen – richten sich danach, wie die folgenden Fragen durch die kommenden Ereignisse beantwortet werden.

Wie lange wird es dauern, bis aus der gegenwärtigen Reaktion auf die Ereignisse eine mächtige politische Kraft wird? Wie lange wird es dauern, bis Deutschlands Führung den Zorn des Volkes spürt, der durch die Aussicht auf die Transformation des Landes provoziert wird? Sollte die Reaktion auf die Ereignisse sich intensivieren, stellt sich die Frage, ob die Bürger lange genug mobilisiert bleiben um politische Organisationen aufzubauen die mächtig genug sind um die Situation zu bereinigen? Werden sie in der Lage sein einen politischen Druck auf Merkel und die politische Klasse aufzubauen, der ausreicht um die von der Elite gebotenen Anreize zu neutralisieren? Werden sie hierzu trotz unaufhörlicher Angriffe durch die Massenmedien und die Eliten des Bildungssektors fähig sein? Werden sie lange genug fokussiert bleiben die Regelungen der EU neu zu verhandeln oder Deutschland aus diesen zu entfernen? Werden sie lange genug beharren um Verfassungsänderungen durchzusetzen, die Deutschland als das Heimatland des deutschen Volkes definieren und rechtliche Abhilfe gegen politische Führer ermöglicht, die demographische Verdrängung herbeizuführen versuchen?

Unabhängig von einer Unterbrechung des Zustroms sollten Deutsche und Europäer sich über die tiefen Ursachen dieses Desasters und über Wege zur Vermeidung einer Wiederholung informieren.



[i] Phillip Hudson, “Europe must follow our lead on turnbacks: Abbott”, The Australian, 28 Oct. 2015, p. 2.

[ii] Rummel, R. J. (1997). “Is collective violence correlated with social pluralism?” Journal of Peace Research 34(3): 163-176.

[iii] Vanhanen, T. (2012). Ethnic conflicts: Their biological roots in ethnic nepotism. London, Ulster Institute for Social Research.

[iv] Dinesen, P. T. and K. M. Soenerskov (2015). “Ethnic diversity and social trust: Evidence from the micro-context.” American Sociological Review. DOI: 10.1177/0003122415577989.

[v] Salter, F. K. and H. Harpending (2013). “J. P. Rushton’s theory of ethnic nepotism.” Personality and Individual Differences 55: 256-260.

[vi] Arbatli, C. E., Q. Ashraf and O. Galor (2015). The nature of conflict. National Bureau of Economic Research Working Paper No. 21079. Abstract:, text:

[vii] Interview of Tino Sanandaji by Margaret Wente, “Sweden’s ugly immigration problem”, The Globe and Mail [Canada], 11 Sept. 2015.

And see Swedish National Council for Crime Prevention (2005). “Crime among people born in Sweden and abroad” (Swedish).

[viii] Danish Statistical Yearbook, 2015:

[ix] In 2014 Germany received 44,000 applications for asylum. It accepted 6,995 applications for asylum and rejected 37,340.,_2014_(number,_rounded_figures)_YB15_IV.png

[x] Assaults rose from 3,863 to 9,655, shoplifting from 4,974 to 13,894. Nick Cater, “Nightmare behind the diversity dream revealed”, The Australian, 13 Oct. 2015, p. 12.

[xi] UK Office for National Statistics. “How much gross debt did the EU28 countries have in 2013?”

[xii] Interview of Sanandaji, op cit.

[xiii] Sanderson, S. K. and T. Vanhanen (2004). Reconciling the differences between Sanderson’s and Vanhanen’s results. Welfare, ethnicity, and altruism. New data and evolutionary theory. F. K. Salter (ed.). London, Frank Cass: 119-120.

[xiv] Salter, F. K. (2004). Ethnic diversity, foreign aid, economic growth, social stability, and population policy: A perspective on W. Masters and M. McMillan’s findings. Op cit.

[xv] Sarrazin, Thilo (2010). Deutschland schafft sich ab: Wie wir unser Land aufs Spiel setzen [Germany abolishes itself: How we risk losing our country]. Berlin, Deutsche Verlags-Anstalt.

[xvi] Herrnstein, R. and C. Murray (1994). The bell curve. Intelligence and class structure in American life. New York, Free Press.

Gottfredson, L. S. (1997). “Why g matters: The complexity of everyday life.” Intelligence 24(1): 79-132.

[xvii] Lynn, R. (2005). Race differences in intelligence: An evolutionary analysis. Augusta, GA, Washington Summit Publishers.

[xviii] Duchesne, R. (2015). “The Greek-Roman invention of civic identity versus the current demotion of European identity.” The Occidental Quarterly 15(3): 37-71.

[xix] The Interior Minister was Dr. Thomas de Maizière. “Die Fluechtlinge”, Radio BR2, “Tagesgesprech”, 14 Sept. 2015.

[xx] Basic Law for the Federal Republic of Germany.

[xxi]„Die Regierung Merkel setzte am 24.08.2015 die Dublin Regel aus, so dass es möglich wurde die Asylanträge syrischer Flüchtlinge in Deutschland zu bearbeiten bzw. die Flüchtlinge in Deutschland aufzunehmen.“

[xxii] In early October 2015, Merkel sidelined de Maizière from the leadership of a new ministry charged with managing the immigrant crisis. He had been critical of immigrant behaviour and the way the intake was being managed, so Merkel appointed someone closer to her who could be trusted to share her enthusiasm for keeping Germany’s door unconditionally open.

[xxiii] Bojan Pancevski, “Ghosts of Gastarbeiter prime Germany for influx”, The Sunday Times, reprinted in The Australian, 14 Sept. 2015, p. 7.

[xxiv] Botho Strauss: “Ich möchte lieber in einem aussterbenden Volk leben als in einem, das aus vorwiegend ökonomisch-demografischen Spekulationen mit fremden Völkern aufgemischt, verjüngt wird, einem vitalen.“ Zitiert in Pancevski, “Merkel fights to keep door open as German fear of migrants grows”, op cit.

[xxv] “Merkel defends migrant stand”, The Weekend Australian, 2-3 January 2016, p. 10.


De instroom van immigranten in Duitsland en Europa: zegen of ramp?

Following is a Dutch translation of “Germany’s Jeopardy”, the November 2015 draft. For discussion of the Merkel government’s arguments for open borders, see the English or German versions.

Introduction: Dire predictions

Tenminste één van de terroristen verantwoordelijk voor de recente aanslagen in Parijs zou Europa binnen zijn gekomen door zich voor te doen als Syrische vluchteling. Deze ontdekking heeft bijgedragen tot de alarmering van veel commentatoren over de massale en aanhoudende instroom van immigranten en vluchtelingen in Duitsland en andere Europese landen. “Alarmering” is nog een gematigde uitdrukking. Sommige mensen denken dat deze instroom een eind kan maken aan de Europese beschaving

Tony Abbott, vanaf 2013 tot 2015 de centrumrechtse premier van Australië, wiens regering het klaar speelde om de vloed van illegale immigranten die per boot naar Australië kwamen te stoppen, is van mening dat Europa haar grenzen moet sluiten om een “catastrofale vergissing” te vermijden. Sprekend in Londen verklaarde hij dat het beschermen van de grenzen “enige weermacht zal vergen; het zal massale logistieke problemen en gigantische onkosten met zich meebrengen; het zal aan onze gewetens knagen – maar het is de enige manier om de menselijke vloedgolf die Europa zal overspoelen, en die Europa zeer wel mogelijk voor altijd zal veranderen, te voorkomen”. Eigenaardig genoeg leggen noch Abbott noch de andere commentatoren uit waarom deze instroom zo gevaarlijk en schadelijk zou zijn. Hetzelfde geldt voor Angela Merkels argument voor open grenzen. Behalve leuzen zoals “Wij kunnen het aan” en verzekeringen dat Duitsland zijn Naziverleden kan overkomen, worden niet of nauwelijks kosten/baten analyses gepresenteerd. Wél wat vaag gepraat dat Duitsland mensen nodig heeft, zonder enige kritische discussie.

In feite ondersteunt uitgebreid sociaalwetenschappelijk multi- en cross-disciplinair onderzoek gedurende de laatste twee decennia degenen die rampspoed aankondigen. Het onderzoek werpt licht op de manier waarop etnische diversiteit invloed heeft op sociale conflicten, criminaliteit, bijstand, etnische ongelijkheid, politiek, en burgerlijke vrijheden.

Sociale conflicten

Recente tragische gebeurtenissen, de aanslagen in Parijs inbegrepen, laten terrorisme de meest voor de hand liggende en meest urgente dreiging lijken. De overstelpende meerderheid van de binnenkomers is moslim. Hoewel de meeste moslims geen terroristen zijn, zijn de meeste terroristen moslims. In het algemeen geldt dat toenemende etnische diversiteit de kans vergroot dat de een of andere minderheid zich verzet tegen het buitenlands beleid en de oorlogsverwikkelingen van de overheid  Er is maar een klein aantal malcontenten die geweld aanhangen nodig om uiteindelijk een tragedie te ontketenen.

Maar terrorisme is niet het voornaamste kwaad dat waarschijnlijk uit de huidige immigratiegolf zal voortkomen.  Het grootste effect zal het verbreken van de psychologische band van nationaliteit zijn, dat van burgerschap een uitgehold legalisme zal maken. Dat komt omdat toenemende diversiteit niet alleen is verbonden met geweld zoals terrorisme en burgeroorlog, maar ook met een algemeen verlies van cohesie. Maar laten we beginnen met het geweld.

Gegevens van talrijke studies tonen aan dat hoe meer etnische diversiteit een samenleving heeft hoe groter het risico van conflicten en, omgekeerd, hoe moeilijker het is om eenheid te bewerkstelligen. Burgeroorlogen zijn minder waarschijnlijk in homogene samenlevingen. Correlatieve studies kwantificeren dat risico. Laten we beginnen met twee studies te bekijken, een van de eerste en een van de meest recente datum.

In een mondiale studie door Rudolf Rummel van de Universiteit van Hawaii in de jaren negentig van de vorige eeuw werd gemeten hoe 109 variabelen bijdroegen aan collectief geweld – guerrilla en burgeroorlog – tussen 1932 en 1982. Rummel vond dat een-vijfde van de variatie in het collectief geweld werd veroorzaakt door slechts één variabele, te weten het aantal etnische groeperingen binnen een samenleving. Conflicten waren intenser (lees bloediger) als de antagonisten verschillende religies hadden. [1]

Een studie van 176 contemporaine samenlevingen door de Finse socioloog Tatu Vanhanen onderzocht etnische conflicten, breed gedefinieerd om ook discriminatie, etnische partijen en belangengroepen erbij te betrekken, en etnisch geweld en burgeroorlogen. Vanhanen vond dat in 2010 twee-derde van de mondiale variatie in etnische conflicten werd verklaard door etnische diversiteit. [2]

Een daaraan verbonden gevolg van etnische diversiteit is verminderd vertrouwen en verlaagd “sociaal kapitaal”, de mate waarin mensen elkaar ondersteunen. Als heterogeniteit toeneemt, neemt de participatie in clubs en vrijwilligerswerk af. Mensen voelen zich meer geïsoleerd en veel minder goed van vertrouwen. Dit effect is, volgens een recente follow-up studie, het sterkste in lokale wijken waar mensen verschillende etnische groeperingen meemaken. Met andere woorden, niet onkunde of isolatie veroorzaken etnische spanningen, maar het contact met andere culturen, inclusief vreemdelingen die in grote getalen het territorium van een thuisland binnenkomen.

Duitse bestuurders zouden zich van de tendens van etnische diversiteit om sociale conflicten te veroorzaken bewust moeten zijn omdat die tendens juist in Duitse onderzoeksinstellingen is bestudeerd. Bijvoorbeeld, Irenäus Eibl-Eibesfeldt, professor verbonden aan het Max Planck Instituut, en collega’s zoals Johan van der Dennen aan de Universiteit van Groningen, Nederland, hebben decennialang de gevolgen van etnische vermenging op etnocentrisme en xenofobie onderzocht. Beide hebben gewaarschuwd dat grootschalige vermenging van verschillende culturen de sociale stabiliteit vermindert en een risico vormt voor de binnenlandse rust.

Meer criminaliteit

Misdaad is sociaal conflict waarbij de dader de wet aan zijn laars lapt. De opsporingscijfers van misdaden gepleegd door niet-westerse immigranten in Europa zijn niet geruststellend. Een verontrustende trend in Frankrijk, dat Europa’s grootste islamitische bevolking herbergt, is de groei van “no-go” wijken waarin zelfs de politie zich niet waagt behalve met massaal geweld. In Frankrijk en Engeland breken af en toe rellen uit die escaleren tot massale gewelddadige opstanden en die zo hevig zijn dat de politie de controle verliest.

Parallelle islamitische gemeenschappen hebben zich gevormd doordat de immigrantenpopulaties uit minder-compatibele culturen zichzelf hebben gesegregeerd, en daarin groeien nu de nieuwe niet-geassimileerde generaties op. Ruimhartige uitkeringen en multiculturalisme verergeren de immigrantencriminaliteit, die dikwijls in de tweede generatie toeneemt.

Tussen 1997 en 2013 vond er een op grote schaal georganiseerde seksuele exploitatie van ‘witte’ meisjes plaats in de Engelse stad Rotherham  in Zuid-Yorkshire, voornamelijk door moslimmannen van Pakistaanse afkomst. Tot zo’n 1400 meisjes zo jong als 12 jaar werden door meerdere mannen verkracht en als blanke slavinnen verhandeld.

Zweden en Denemarken bieden ook een inkijkje in wat Duitsland kan verwachten van de opname van ongeselecteerde immigranten afkomstig uit het Midden Oosten en Afrika. In Zweden is de meerderheid van moord-, verkrachting-, en roofoverval-verdachten immigrant, ondanks het feit dat immigranten slechts 16 percent van de bevolking uitmaken. [3]

In Denemarken plegen immigranten vanuit verschillende landen naar rato veel meer misdaden dan de etnische Denen. Dit geldt in het bijzonder voor immigranten uit het Midden Oosten en Afrika. [4] De grootste frequentie van criminaliteit werd bij kinderen van niet-westerse immigranten gevonden. De 15- tot 19-jarigen waren over-gerepresenteerd met 93 percent, de 10- tot 29-jarigen met 130 percent en de 30- tot 39-jarigen met 135 percent. Etnische Denen waren onder-gerepresenteerd in alle leeftijdscategorieën.

Wat Duitsland betreft zijn de gegevens minder toegankelijk, maar officieuze cijfers wijzen erop dat in 2011 asielzoekers 3.3 percent van alle misdaden pleegden, vele malen meer dan hun proportie van de Duitse bevolking. In 2014 was dat toch-al-hoge cijfer opgelopen tot maar liefst 7.7 percent. Gedurende dezelfde periode was het aantal overvallen en gevallen van winkeldiefstal in heel Duitsland meer dan verdubbeld. [5]

Verminderde bijstand

De instroom van miljoenen arme mensen heeft natuurlijk een funeste invloed op de beschikbare bijstandsgelden. Europeanen die hun hele leven sociale verzekeringspremies hebben betaald zullen binnenkort opdraaien voor gezondheid, onderdak, werkeloosheid en ouderdomsvoorziening voor miljoenen die nooit iets hebben bijgedragen. Als deze instroom niet wordt gestopt zal dit het begin zijn van een astronomische overdracht van rijkdom, zolang als het systeem dit overleeft.

Het zal waarschijnlijk niet lang overleven omdat de meeste Europese regeringen al zwaar in de schulden zitten voornamelijk door hun bijstandsuitkeringen. In 2013, het laatste jaar waarover gegevens beschikbaar zijn, was die schuldenlast 81% van het bruto nationaal product (BNP) in Oostenrijk, 104% in België, 92% in Frankrijk, 77% in Duitsland, 128% in Spanje, 92% in Spanje, en 87% in het Verenigd Koninkrijk. [6]

In Zweden is de overheidsschuld slechts 39% van het BNP maar de immigranten uit Afrika en het Midden Oosten zijn de financiële middelen aan het uitputten. Deze immigranten maken ongeveer 16% van de bevolking uit maar incasseren zoveel als 58% van de bijstandsuitkeringen, een grote overdracht van rijkdom afkomstig van de etnische Zweden. Die overdracht is een slechte investering omdat 48% van de leeftijdsgroep van immigranten die arbeid kan verrichten werkeloos is. Zelfs na 15 jaar in het land werkt 40% niet.

Maar de bijstand is nóg kwetsbaarder. Onderzoek verricht bij de Duitse Max Planck Gesellschaft toont aan dat etnische verandering door immigratie de motivatie van belastingbetalers verandert, door hun bereidheid om bij te dragen aan die bijstand te verminderen. Vergelijking van bijstandssystemen van over de hele wereld laat zien dat wanneer etnische diversiteit toeneemt, bijstand over het algemeen afneemt. [7]

Niet alleen de bijstand neemt af maar alle diensten die steunen op openbare voorzieningen, inclusief medewerking met politie, “goede doelen”, medische en militaire autoriteiten.

Ontwikkelingshulp, dat bijstand is op internationaal niveau, is zelfs nog gevoeliger. Ontwikkelingshulp is sterk en negatief gecorreleerd met de etnisch-culturele heterogeniteit van de donorlanden. [8]

De ironie kon niet wreder zijn. Door het accepteren van grote getalen van mensen van niet-westerse culturen die van de ruimhartige bijstand proberen te profiteren, riskeren Europese landen niet alleen het verlies van nationale bijstand voor autochtonen zowel als allochtonen, maar verminderen ze ook nog hun ontwikkelingshulp aan de thuislanden van diezelfde immigranten. Het is een verlies-verlies strategie.

Grotere etnische ongelijkheid

Etnische ongelijkheid, een voorname oorzaak van burgerconflicten, zal toenemen als gevolg van de huidige instroom. Wanneer een etnische groepering over generaties heen geen inkomensgelijkheid kan realiseren, dan is het resultaat een diep-ingebakken ressentiment en een lage drempel voor burgerlijke onrust.

Er bestaat, nogmaals, geen verontschuldiging voor ignorantie omdat Duitsland zijn eigen inheemse leermeester over de oorzaken van etnische ongelijkheid heeft. Thilo Sarrazin was een SPD-politicus en directielid van de Deutsche Bank tot 2010, het jaar dat hij een boek publiceerde getiteld Deutschland schafft sich ab. Wie wir unser Land aufs Spiel setzen. [9]  Sarrazin documenteerde de trage integratie van Turkse immigranten in de Duitse samenleving en economie, hun disproportionele afhankelijkheid van overheidsuitkeringen en hun hogere vruchtbaarheid. Hij identificeerde de islamitische religie als de oorzaak van de trage assimilatie en etnische tradities als de oorzaak van lagere onderwijsresultaten. [10] Angela Merker was al Duitse Kanselier in 2010. Zij veroordeelde Sarrazin en keurde zijn ontslag als directielid van de Deutsche Bank goed, een voorteken van haar radicalisme in 2015.

Het is zeker dat de huidige instroom de etnische stratificatie in Duitsland en in Europa zal verergeren. Als die alleen maar te wijten zou zijn aan povere taalbeheersing en lage opleiding zou de ongelijkheid binnen een generatie of twee gedicht kunnen zijn (nog altijd een enorme aanslag op de ontvangende samenlevingen). Maar veel van de immigranten komen van bevolkingen met een lange traditie van slechte opleidings- en economische prestatieniveaus, die hoogstwaarschijnlijk zullen uitmonden in chronische etnische stratificatie. [11] Duitsland en Europa zijn bezig een nieuwe onderklasse te importeren.

Geracialiseerde politiek

Ondanks het open deur beleid dat door zelf-verkondigde anti-racisten wordt aangehangen, is één zekere uitkomst van de nieuwe immigrantenstroom de verdere racialisatie van de politiek in de vorm van etnische partijen, multiculturalisme en positieve discriminatie, indoctrinatie op school, en politieke correctheid. Geracialiseerde politiek is reeds een werkelijkheid in verscheidene samenlevingen zoals Engeland, Frankrijk, de USA en Australië, waar die steeds intensiever wordt.

In de gehele gedocumenteerde geschiedenis hebben samenlevingen immigratie beperkt, vooral als het om grote getalen ging. Merkels open deur beleid is een moedig sociaal experiment dat nu al medelevensmoeheid oproept. Nationalistische en anti-immigratie partijen zijn aan het gedijen in Oostenrijk, België, Engeland, Denemarken, Frankrijk, Griekenland, Hongarije, Italië, Polen, Slowakije, Zweden en Zwitserland.

Een reden van racialisatie is etnische ongelijkheid. Tegen de tweede-generatie worden de armere immigrantengroeperingen, vooral die groeperingen die cultureel en raciaal opvallen, ontvankelijk voor radicalisering door ideologieën die hun grieven legitimeren. Deze ideologieën helpen immigranten hun lage socio-economische status en hun gevoel van vervreemding te rationaliseren in termen van slachtofferschap van wit racisme. Deze ideologieën worden verkregen van universiteiten, scholen, de media, welzijnswerkers, politici en etnische leiders.

Slachtofferschapsideologieën leiden ook tot schuldgevoelens en angst bij blanken door ‘witte’ etniciteit met extremisme en fascisme te associëren.[12] Dit conditioneert hen om immigratie tot vervangingsniveau te aanvaarden. Deze doctrines hebben de Engelstalige landen en veel van westelijk Europa beïnvloed sinds de culturele revolutie van de jaren zestig en zeventig van de vorige eeuw.

In Duitsland is ondertussen de electorale immigratiepolitiek begonnen op de antidemocratische manier zo kenmerkend voor de etnische politiek in het westelijke Europa. Er is geen referendum gepland om de Duitsers enige zeggenschap over hun toekomst te geven. Buiten Beieren, waar de regerende CSU Merkels beleid bekritiseert, hebben burgers zelfs niet de optie om tegen het open deur beleid te stemmen in een normale electie omdat de grootste partijen achter het open grenzen beleid staan. Duitsers die een stem willen hebben in het immigratiebeleid moeten stemmen op nieuwe partijen die nog geen uitgesproken belangen vertegenwoordigen, zoals de AfD. [13]

Beperkte burgerlijke vrijheden

Opkomende diversiteit ondermijnt burgerrechten. Overal waar de oorspronkelijke etnische groepering de macht over de immigratiestromen heeft verloren komen overheden onder druk te staan van politiek links en hun minderheidsbondgenoten om “haatspraak” te verbieden. Het beperken van de vrijheid van meningsuiting gaat ook vooraf aan, en draagt bij tot de toename van immigratie. Maar het is zeker ook een gevolg van diversiteit.

Beperkingen van de vrijheid van meningsuiting hebben een ontmoedigende werking op het publieke debat. De miljoenen die nu Duitsland en Europa binnenstromen profiteren van deze repressie. Hun aanwezigheid zal alleen maar de overheid meer onder druk zetten om op te treden tegen hun protesterende burgers  De onderliggende reden voor dit repressieve optreden is de groei van massale endemische sociale conflicten, geheel voorspelbaar en inderdaad voorspeld door sociale wetenschappers.


Het hierboven besproken bewijsmateriaal toont aan dat onheilswaarschuwingen niet bepaald overbodig zijn. De etnische transformatie die nu op Duitsland en de rest van Europa wordt losgelaten door hun politieke leiders, zal, indien vervolgd, leiden tot ernstige beschadiging van de Europese cultuur en levenswijze. Het zal leiden tot bankroete bijstand, het zal de economie ondermijnen, en het zal wijdverbreide chronische etnische ongelijkheid en conflicten oproepen. De opkomst van anti-immigratie partijen wordt gevoed door het besef van verlies. Door sociale en economische polarisatie binnen te halen waarbij de staat met de minderheden heult, kunnen de verblinde politieke leiders van Europa zelfs de Vrede van Münster van 1648, die een einde maakte aan de godsdienstoorlogen, de nek omdraaien. Er bestaat een risico op burgeroorlog als islamitische terroristen steun vinden binnen de nieuwe florerende immigrantengemeenschappen en de oorspronkelijke Europeanen het vertrouwen verliezen in het vermogen of de wil van hun regeringen om hen te beschermen. Zelfs zonder burgeroorlog zal de Europese levenswijze teloorgaan als de huidige niveaus van conflicten – rellen, verkrachtingen en straatcriminaliteit – verergeren.

Sociaal kapitaal – cohesie, samenwerking, vrijwilligerswerk – zal afnemen als Europa meer in zichzelf keert en meer verdeeld raakt. Europa zal niet langer de meest gulle gever van ontwikkelingshulp zijn. Als gevolg daarvan zullen de armste landen van de wereld eveneens de dupe zijn van Merkels open deur beleid.

Elementen van de Europese cultuur en politiek zullen deze troebelen overleven, maar de Europese civilisatie over de hele linie, het resultaat van drie millennia van culturele evolutie, staat op het spel.

Hopelijk zal het gezond verstand overwinnen en zullen journalisten en politici respectvol luisteren naar de bezorgdheden en de wensen van de bevolking en hun vitale belangen vertegenwoordigen. Wellicht zal Merkel herstellen van haar morele manie en zichzelf lang genoeg bevrijden van de tentakels van speciale belangen om de stormvloed te keren. Misschien zal de EU een behoudend immigratiebeleid formuleren, een beleid dat niet uitsluitend de belangen van de immigranten behartigt maar het belang erkent van de Europeanen in het bewaren van hun identiteit, cultuur, binnenlandse rust, gelijkheid en samenhang. Of misschien zal de EU uit elkaar vallen als de individuele landen verkiezen zichzelf te beschermen.

Of er al of niet een pauze in de instroom optreedt, Duitsers en andere Europeanen zouden zichzelf moeten onderwijzen over de diepere oorzaken van deze ramp en hoe die in de toekomst te vermijden.



[1] Rummel, R. J. (1997). “Is collective violence correlated with social pluralism?” Journal of Peace Research 34(3): 163-176.

[2] Vanhanen, T. (2012). Ethnic conflicts: Their biological roots in ethnic nepotism. London, Ulster Institute for Social Research.

[3] Interview of Tino Sanandaji by Margaret Wente, “Sweden’s ugly immigration problem”, The Globe and Mail [Canada], 11 Sept. 2015.

Swedish National Council for Crime Prevention (2005). Crime among people born in Sweden and abroad (Swedish).

[4] Danish Statistical Yearbook, 2015:

[5] Assaults rose from 3,863 to 9,655, shoplifting from 4,974 to 13,894. Nick Cater, “Nightmare behind the diversity dream revealed”, The Australian, 13 Oct. 2015, p. 12.

[6] UK Office for National Statistics. “How much gross debt did the EU28 countries have in 2013?”

[7] Sanderson, S. K. and T. Vanhanen (2004). Reconciling the differences between Sanderson’s and Vanhanen’s results. Welfare, ethnicity, and altruism. New data and evolutionary theory. F. K. Salter (ed.). London, Frank Cass: 119-120.

[8] Salter, F. K. (2004). Ethnic diversity, foreign aid, economic growth, social stability, and population policy: A perspective on W. Masters and M. McMillan’s findings. Op cit.

[9] Sarrazin, Thilo (2010). Deutschland schafft sich ab: Wie wir unser Land aufs Spiel setzen [Germany abolishes itself: How we risk losing our country]. Berlin, Deutsche Verlags-Anstalt.

[10] Herrnstein, R. and C. Murray (1994). The bell curve. Intelligence and class structure in American life. New York, Free Press.

Gottfredson, L. S. (1997). “Why g matters: The complexity of everyday life.” Intelligence 24(1): 79-132.

[11] Lynn, R. (2005). Race differences in intelligence: An evolutionary analysis. Augusta, GA, Washington Summit Publishers.

[12] Duchesne, R. (2015). “The Greek-Roman invention of civic identity versus the current demotion of European identity.” The Occidental Quarterly 15(3): 37-71.

[13] The Alternative fuer Deutschland’s polling improved due to the immigrant influx.


Tatu Vanhanen (1929-2015): Pioneer evolutionary sociologist


Tatu Vanhanen, a pioneer of evolutionary sociology as well as a long-term colleague, collaborator and friend, died in 2015 at the age of 86 after a long illness.

Vanhanen specialised in cross-cultural analysis of political systems. For much of his career he studied the causes of democratisation by comparing large numbers of societies. He developed an Index of Democratisation. His core finding was that democracy is facilitated by a relatively even distribution of resources, which helps explain why democracy is associated with a large middle class. In the last two decades he used the same statistical methods to study the effects of ethnic diversity and population differences in IQ.

In 2004 Finland’s ethnic agency attempted to suppress Vanhanen’s research. The “Ombudsman of Minorities”, the Finnish equivalent of Australia’s Race Discrimination Commissioner, accused him of racially offensive statements and sought to have police authorities (the Finnish National Bureau of Investigations) investigate whether he had broken the law when he reported his research findings in a media interview. Vanhanen had been discussing his groundbreaking research conducted in collaboration with British psychologist Richard Lynn. A global correlation study indicated that average national IQ was the single strongest predictor of per capita GDP. Like Nobel Prize winning geneticist James Watson, Vanhanen linked low African IQ to that continent’s relative poverty. He was criticised for the same political reasons that Watson was condemned. But unlike Watson, Vanhanen never recanted.

The attack on Vanhanen caused media interest partly because his son, Matti Vanhanen, was prime minister of Finland at the time. Son and father were close but the son distanced himself from his father. Such is the power of the alliance between the political left and minority ethnocentrists in many Western societies.

Tatu Vanhanen’s work, including that done in collaboration with Richard Lynn, was groundbreaking. It shows the potential of sociology once it is stripped of political bias. The impact of his research is still to be registered.

Following is a selection of some significant publications by Vanhanen.

(1991). Politics of ethnic nepotism: India as an example. New Delhi, Sterling.

(1997). Prospects of democracy. A study of 172 countries. New York, Routledge.

(1999). Ethnic conflicts explained by ethnic nepotism. Stamford, CT, JAI Press.

(2002). IQ and the wealth of nations. Westport, Conn., Praeger. [Co-authored with Richard Lynn.]

(2004). An exploratory comparative study of the relationship between ethnic heterogeneity and welfare politics. Welfare, ethnicity, and altruism. New data and evolutionary theory. F. K. Salter. London, Frank Cass: 88-118.

(2006). IQ and global inequality. Augusts, Georgia, Washington Summit Publishers. [Co-authored with Richard Lynn.]

(2009). The limits of democratization: Climate, intelligence, and resource distribution. Augusta, Georgia, Washington Summit Publishers.

(2012). Ethnic conflicts: Their biological roots in ethnic nepotism. London, Ulster Institute for Social Research.

(2012). Intelligence: A unifying construct for the social sciences. London, Ulster Institute for Social Research. [Co-authored with Richard Lynn.]

(2014). Global inequality as a consequence of human diversity. London, Ulster Institute for Social Research.

Germany’s Jeopardy

Could the Immigrant Influx “End European Civilization”?


Introduction: Dire predictions
Social conflict
More crime
Reduced welfare
Greater ethnic inequality
Racialized politics
Reduced civil liberties
Benefits? Arguments for open borders
Conclusion: Jeopardy. Will Europe Survive?


Introduction: Dire predictions

My name is Frank Salter. I’m an Australian political ethologist, meaning that I include biological approaches when studying society and politics. I’ve spent much of my career researching at a Max Planck Institute in Germany, as well as teaching there and elsewhere in Europe and the United States. One of my research areas is ethnic solidarity and conflict and how this affects democratic welfare states.

In this talk I discuss the dire predictions that have been made about the massive influx of immigrants and refugees still entering Germany and other European countries from the Middle East, Africa and Asia. Many then fan-out, crossing Europe’s old national borders which are no longer regulated due to the Shengen Agreement. Some believe this could end European civilization, despite the outpouring of goodwill and hospitality shown by millions of Germans and other Europeans. These predictions have not only come from anti-immigrant ideologues but from moderate politicians.

An example is Tony Abbott, until recently Australian prime minister. Speaking in London, Abbott called on Europe to close its borders to avoid a “catastrophic error”. He declared that protecting the borders will “require some force; it will require massive logistics and expense; it will gnaw at our consciences – yet it is the only way to prevent a tide of humanity surging through Europe and quite possibly changing it forever.”[i]

Curiously, neither Abbott nor the other commentators explain why the influx would be so damaging. The same is true of Angela Merkel’s argument for opening the borders. Where was the sober and transparent assessment of costs and benefits?

In this talk I attempt such an assessment, by reviewing research on the way that ethnic diversity tends to increase social conflict and crime, undermine welfare, exacerbate ethnic inequality, racialize politics and erode civil liberties. I then compare these costs with the benefits of mass Third World immigration asserted by Angela Merkel and her supporters.

Social conflict

Recent tragic events, including the attacks in Paris, make terrorism appear the most obvious and immediate threat. The overwhelming majority of incomers are Muslims. Though most Muslims are not terrorists, many terrorists are Muslims. In general, rising ethnic diversity increases the chance that one minority or another will oppose the government’s foreign policy. Tragedy results if even a small number of disaffected individuals adopt violence.

However, terrorism is not the main harm likely to arise from the present immigration. The main effect will be to fracture the psychological bond of nationality, leaving citizenship a hollowed-out legalism. That is because rising diversity is associated not only with violence such as terrorism and civil war, but with a general loss of social cohesion. But let us begin with violence.

Data from numerous studies show that the more ethnically diverse a society the greater the risk of conflict and, conversely, the more difficult it is to forge unity. Civil conflict is less likely in more homogeneous societies. Academic researchers have attempted to quantify the risk.

In the 1990s a global study by Rudolf Rummel at the University of Hawaii measured how 109 variables contributed to collective violence of the extreme variety – guerrilla and civil war – between 1932 and 1982; that’s a 50 year period. He found that one fifth of the variation in collective violence was caused by just one variable, the number of ethnic groups within the society. Conflict was made more intense when the antagonistic parties had different religions. [ii] That finding is obviously relevant to the present situation where Muslims are flooding into a largely Christian and secular Europe.

A study of contemporary societies by Finnish sociologist Tatu Vanhanen examined ethnic conflict defined more broadly to include discrimination, ethnic parties and interest groups, as well as ethnic violence and civil war. Vanhanen used evolutionary theory to hypothesize that diversity would cause conflict to rise. Among the 176 societies he studied, Vanhanen found that in 2010 two thirds of global variation in ethnic conflict was explained by ethnic diversity.[iii] In other words, much of the difference between united peaceful countries and those riven by ethnic conflict is the latters’ ethnic diversity.

A related effect of diversity is lowered cooperation and “social capital”, the extent to which people support each other. As heterogeneity grows, participation in clubs and volunteer work falls. People become more isolated and less trustful. The effect is strongest in local neighbourhoods where people experience different ethnic groups.[iv] In other words, it is not ignorance or isolation that cause ethnic discord, but contact with other cultures, including foreigners entering a homeland territory in large numbers.

German governments should be aware of the tendency of ethnic diversity to cause social conflict because that tendency has been studied in German research institutions. For example, ethologist Irenaeus Eibl-Eibesfeldt, a professor at the Max Planck Society, and colleagues such as Johan van der Dennen at the University of Groningen, The Netherlands, have for decades studied the effects of cultural mixing on ethnocentrism and xenophobia in mass anonymous societies. Both have warned that large scale mixing of different ethnicities reduces social stability and risks domestic peace.

Some of the research I’ve been discussing was inspired by evolutionary theory. This is an important approach long excluded from the social sciences. Human psychology evolved in the context of ethnically homogeneous groups. From this perspective the diversity now being imposed by modern elites is unnatural on the evolutionary time scale. That unnatural level of diversity is responsible for some of the conflict, according to evolutionary theory. Further confirmation of this evolutionary hypothesis is the finding that genetic diversity, as distinct from cultural diversity, correlates with social conflict. Since ethnic groups are pools of genetic similarity,[v] mixing such pools increases genetic variation within a society and, according to new global research, causes greater social conflict.[vi]

Stronger causes than genetic diversity are cultural, economic and historical factors, which help explain the surge of goodwill that Germans, Swedes and other Europeans showed Syrian refugees in 2015. But these factors can fluctuate greatly in the short term, while it can take many generations for genetic variation to fall.

More crime

Crime is social conflict in which the aggressor breaks the law. The track record of crime committed by non-Western immigrants to Europe is not reassuring.

A disturbing trend in France, which has Europe’s largest Islamic population, is the growth of no-go areas where even police dare not venture except in force. In addition in France and Britain there are occasional riots so violent and extensive that police lose control. These periods of mass conflict amount to uprisings.

The trend is for parallel societies to be established as the immigrant populations from less compatible cultures segregate themselves and new generations come of age. Generous welfare and multiculturalism exacerbate immigrant crime, which often increases in the second generation.

Between 1997 and 2013 large scale organized sexual exploitation of white girls took place in the English town of Rotherham in South Yorkshire, predominantly by Muslim Pakistani men. Up to 1,400 girls as young as 12 years of age were raped and sex-trafficked by multiple men.

Sweden and Denmark also offer a glimpse of what Germany can expect from the intake of unselected immigrants coming from incompatible cultures. In Sweden the majority of those charged with murder, rape and robbery are immigrants, despite immigrants numbering only 16 per cent of the population.[vii]

In Denmark immigrants from several countries commit crimes at a much higher rate than do ethnic Danes. This is especially true of immigrants from the Middle East and Africa.[viii] The greatest frequency of law-breaking was shown by the children of non-Western immigrants. Those aged 15-19 were overrepresented by 93 per cent, those aged 20-29 by 130 percent, and those aged 30-39 were overrepresented by 135 per cent. Ethnic Danes were underrepresented for all these age categories.

For Germany the data are less accessible but an unconfirmed report indicates that in 2011 asylum-seekers committed 3.3 per cent of all crimes, many times their proportion of the German population.[ix] By 2014 that already-high figure had jumped to 7.7 per cent of all crime. In the same period, the number of assaults and shoplifting across Germany more than doubled.[x]

Reduced welfare

Obviously the influx of millions of poor people will strain welfare budgets. Europeans who have paid social security insurance their whole working lives will soon be supporting health, housing, unemployment and age benefits for millions who have never contributed. If the influx is not stopped, this will be the start of an astronomical transfer of wealth, while the system survives.

It might not survive long because most European governments are already heavily in debt and managing heavy welfare expenditures. In 2013, the last year for which data are available, general government gross debt in Austria was 81% of GDP, in Belgium 104%, France 92%, Germany 77%, Italy 128%, Spain 92%, and the United Kingdom 87%.[xi]

In Sweden government debt is only about 39% of GDP but its immigrants from Africa and the Middle East are straining the budget. These immigrants make up about 16% of the population but take as much as 58% of welfare payments, representing a large wealth transfer from ethnic Swedes.[xii] That transfer is a bad investment because about 48% of working-age immigrants are unemployed. Even after 15 years in the country, 40% are not working.

But welfare is still more fragile than these figures indicate.

Research conducted at Germany’s Max Planck Society indicates that ethnic change due to immigration will change taxpayers’ motivation, reducing their willingness to support welfare. Comparison of welfare systems around the world shows that as ethnic diversity rises, welfare tends to decline.[xiii]

Not only welfare declines but any services relying on contributions to public goods. That includes cooperation with police, charities, medical and military authorities.

Foreign aid, which is international welfare, is even more fragile. Foreign aid is strongly and negatively correlated with donor countries’ ethnic diversity.[xiv]

The irony could not be more cruel. By accepting large numbers of people of non-Western cultures, who are seeking to benefit from generous welfare, European countries not only risk losing domestic welfare for natives and immigrants alike, but reducing their foreign aid to immigrants’ homelands. It’s a lose-lose strategy.

Greater ethnic inequality

Ethnic inequality, a major cause of civil conflict, will increase as a result of the present influx. When an ethnic group fails to achieve income equality down the generations, the effect is deeply ingrained resentment and a low threshold for civil unrest. That might be why second generation immigrants often show higher criminality than their parents.

Once again there is no excuse for ignorance because Germany has its own native-born instructor on the causes of ethnic inequality. Thilo Sarrazin was an SPD politician and, until 2010, board member of the Deutschebank, the year he published a book titled Germany abolishes itself: How we risk losing our country.[xv] Sarrazin documented the slow pace of integration of Turkish immigrants into German society and economy, their disproportionate reliance on government welfare and their higher fertility. He found that slow assimilation was caused by the Islamic religion and lower educational outcomes were caused by persistent ethnic tradition.[xvi] When he wrote this, Angela Merkel was already German Chancellor. She condemned Sarrazin and endorsed his removal from the Deutschebank board, an omen of her 2015 radicalism and intolerance.

It is certain that the present influx will escalate ethnic stratification in Germany and in Europe. If this were only due to poor languages skills and low education, the inequality could close within a generation or two (still an appalling assault on the receiving societies). But many of the immigrants come from populations with long records of poor educational and economic performance, likely to result in chronic ethnic stratification reminiscent of despotic empires.[xvii] By importing a new underclass, Germany and Europe are abolishing their egalitarian national societies.

Racialized politics

An open door policy is advocated by self-proclaimed anti-racists such as Angela Merkel and her allies on the far left. The “anti-fa” protesters who shout-down PEGIDA and other conservatives take it for granted that borders should be open to all comers. But one certain outcome of the new immigrant influx is the further racialization of politics and growing demographic pressure on ethnic Europeans. Racialization will take the form of sectarianism, ethnic parties, multiculturalism, school indoctrination, political correctness and affirmative action – discrimination meant to equalise outcomes. Racialized politics is already a fact of life in diverse societies such as Britain, France, the United States and Australia.

Throughout recorded history societies controlled immigration, especially when it involved large numbers. Angela Merkel’s and Francois Hollande’s open door policy is a reckless social experiment that is already inducing compassion fatigue. Nationalist and anti-immigration parties are rising in Austria, Belgium, Britain, Denmark, France, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Poland, Slovakia, Sweden, and Switzerland.

The ethnic inequality discussed earlier is an important cause of racialization. By the second generation poorer immigrant groups, especially those that are culturally or racially visible, become susceptible to radicalization by ideologies that legitimate grievances. These ideologies help immigrants rationalise their low socioeconomic status and sense of alienation by making them out to be victims of white racism. The ideologies are acquired from universities, schools, the media, social workers, politicians and ethnic leaders.

Victimhood ideologies also produce guilt and fear in whites, by linking their ethnic identities – and only theirs – to extremism and fascism.[xviii] This is unfair because white majorities are typically less ethnocentric than minorities.

The myth of minority victimhood conditions the white majority to accept replacement-level immigration. These doctrines have been influential in English-speaking countries and much of Western Europe since the cultural revolution of the 1960s and 1970s.

Meanwhile in Germany immigration politics has started in the non-democratic mode typical of ethnic politics throughout the West. No referendum is planned to give Germans a choice concerning their destiny. With minor exceptions, citizens do not even have the option of voting against the open door policy in a normal election, because the major parties support open borders. Germans who wish to have a say in immigration policy must vote for new parties that have not yet been captured by special interests.

Reduced civil liberties

Rising diversity undermines civil rights. Wherever the founding ethnic group has lost control of immigration, governments come under pressure from the political left and their minority clients to suppress “hate speech”, which can include statements of opinion and fact. The limiting of free speech also precedes and helps cause the rise of replacement level immigration. But certainly it is also an effect of diversity.

Restrictions of speech have a chilling effect on public debate. The millions now flooding into Germany and Europe are beneficiaries of this repression. Their presence will only increase pressure on government to crack down on restless natives. The underlying reason for the crackdown will be the rise of massive endemic social conflict, wholly predictable and indeed predicted by social scientists.

Benefits? Arguments for open borders

Are these costs outweighed by the benefits proposed by Angela Merkel and her supporters? Six main arguments have been advanced to persuade Germans to accept the influx.

1. The first argument is Merkel’s claim that Germany and Europe are morally obliged to settle genuine refugees. There is obviously a moral duty to help but the argument that refugees must be settled in Europe fails for two simple reasons. Firstly, many of the incomers are not refugees but economic immigrants. Secondly, the heavy costs imposed by the influx on native Germans means that a moral policy must optimise the two sides’ interests, not maximize immigrant welfare at the expense of the host society. After all, the first duty of governments, especially in democracies, is to protect their constituents. Germany and the EU could be helping refugees in or near their own countries.

2. The second argument is Merkel’s claim that Germany will benefit by throwing off its Nazi legacy once and for all. This is a despicable argument because Germans are innocent of genocide, unless one accepts the Nazi doctrine of collective racial guilt. The opposite effect is more likely. Vilification of ethnic Germans could intensify because Merkel has launched a new era of racialized politics in which exponents of mass Third World immigration will use any victimhood narrative to silence the majority.

3. The third argument was stated by the German Interior Minister in mid September 2015.[xix] He claimed that the government had no choice but to accept any number of refugees because Article 16a, paragraph 1, of the German constitution, the Grundgesetz, states that “Persons persecuted on political grounds shall have the right of asylum.” This is a strictly legalistic argument because, as we have seen, there is no moral duty to settle large numbers of refugees in Germany. So let’s look more closely at the law. Paragraph 2 of Article 16a of the Grundgesetz states that paragraph 1 does not apply to persons entering the Federal Republic “from a member state of the European Communities”.[xx] The overwhelming majority of refugees entering Germany have come via other EU states. Germany was entitled to prevent them entering but the Merkel government suspended the Dublin Regulation, which requires asylum seekers to be returned to the European country of first arrival.[xxi] How could Germany have accepted this EU law in the first place if it contradicted the German constitution? If, on the other hand, the Dublin Regulation reflects article 16a of the constitution, how could it be so easily suspended?[xxii] Clearly Germany and the EU can legally protect their borders. It is Merkel and other EU leaders who allowed the influx, not any law.

4. The fourth argument was advanced by Merkel and Mercedes CEO Dieter Zetsch, who maintained that the refugees will make productive workers. Zetsch stated: “They could, like the guest workers from decades ago, help us preserve and improve our prosperity. For Germany cannot any more fill the jobs available.” This is utopian speculation that runs counter to precedent and knowledge of cultural differences. More likely, Germany will be burdened by immigrant communities suffering high unemployment and concentrated in low productivity unskilled jobs.

5. The fifth argument is even more radical. It was stated by demographer Stephan Sievert, of the Berlin Institute for Population and Development. Sievert optimistically stated that Germany’s population was at last growing, after decades of stagnation.[xxiii] Sievert does not admit that his implied policy entails the rapid demographic replacement of the German ethnic family, in effect cultural genocide by stages. If the German people were given the opportunity to vote on this policy, perhaps a majority would agree with German author Botho Strauss, who declared that he prefers to live among his own people even if they are falling in numbers, rather than live in an imposed cultural mix.[xxiv]

6. A sixth argument has been offered by Merkel, in her New Year’s address for 2016. It is the open border mantra, that immigration is generally good. Merkel stated that “countries have always benefited from successful immigration, both economically and socially”.[xxv] It is a danger sign when highly educated people resort to tautologies, such as deducing that successful immigration is successful. In fact immigrant societies – America, Australia, Canada, the Netherlands, France, and others – are all well down the track of turning their founding cultures into minorities without ever offering them a democratic choice. Merkel also followed the usual pro-immigration line by accusing her critics of “coldness or even hatred”, implying that she is motivated by warmer emotions. And she foreshadowed a new inclusive definition of what it means to be German, which is a prudent move for someone intent on demographic transformation. Omitted from this latest statement, but likely to follow, are other elements of the pro-immigration mantra, such as diversity is strength, or German identity is the same as citizenship, or school children must be educated in tolerance, or immigrants rescue German culture from its white-bread impoverishment. These arguments and assertions are completely normal in Western societies whose political classes have opened them to mass immigration.

These six alleged benefits of massive unselected immigration are typical of the intellectual level of open border arguments elsewhere in Western countries. That such shallow and sometimes mendacious rhetoric is uttered by intelligent individuals would be impossible without their near monopoly of media access resulting from the ideological intolerance that has suppressed open debate for decades.

Conclusion: Jeopardy. Will Europe Survive?

The evidence just reviewed indicates that dire warnings are not overstated. The ethnic transformation now being inflicted on Germany and the rest of Europe by its political class, if continued, will severely damage European culture and way of life. The opposed arguments are flimsy and fail entirely to address the perceived risks. Commentators are not exaggerating then they warn that European civilization, the result of three millennia of cultural evolution, is in jeopardy.

Hopefully common sense will prevail and journalists and politicians will listen respectfully to the people’s concerns and aspirations. Perhaps Merkel and Hollande will recover from their moral mania and free themselves from special interests long enough to deign the flood to recede. Perhaps the EU will formulate a conservative immigration policy, one that does not cater mainly to the interests of immigrants, minorities and the corporate sector but also respects Europeans by preserving their identities, cultures, domestic peace, equality and national cohesion. It is more likely that voters will solve the problem than Europe’s intellectually corrupt political class, and that new parties will be granted the power to reclaim national sovereignty from the failed EU project. In that case the EU will collapse, as individual nations move to protect themselves from the Shengen Agreement, now become a mortal threat instead of a promise. That could form the basis for a new trans-European movement that protects the identities and ways of life of individual nations and Europe as a whole.

But until now these considerations have been foreign to Angela Merkel and her supporters. She sells her open door policy as humanitarian. But in reality this is a cruel policy likely to produce suffering across Germany and Europe. She has failed to consider the interests of individual European nations or of Europe as a whole. Europe’s political class has, in effect, embraced the most aggressive form of multiculturalism, in which the establishment forms an alliance with minorities to dominate the majority.

The suffering the open door policy will bring – the inequality, including the special evil of ethnic stratification, the collapse of welfare, the crime, the slums and no-go areas, the degradation of women, the racialization of politics, the decline in wages, the loss of national cohesion, the growing sense of loss and alienation among Germans and immigrants alike, the accelerated replacement of Europeans in their ancient homelands, the constriction of civil rights and the pervasive chaos – all of this will last for generations.

Merkel is doubly cruel because she is stripping developing societies of their more educated and industrious people. The inevitable fall in European foreign aid will hurt poor countries around the world, caused by the stagnation of European economies and decline in social capital.

A responsible policy would resemble the British strategy of helping refugees in or near their own countries while restricting their immigration to Europe, though it should be noted that in Britain non-refugee immigration is out of control.

For Germany the situation is more threatening due to its toxic political culture, despite its present low level of ethnic diversity. The country’s chances of recovery – which means adopting a sustainable immigration policy – depend on how the following questions are answered by events.

How long will it take for the present reaction to become a powerful political force?   How long before Germany’s leadership feels the wrath of a people enraged at the prospect of the transformation of their country? And should the reaction become intense, will citizens remain mobilised long enough to build political organisations sufficiently powerful to correct the situation? Will they be able to inflict political censure on Merkel and the political class so stark that it neutralises the incentives offered by the establishment? Will they be able to do so in the teeth of relentless attacks from the mainstream media and educational establishments? Will they stay focused long enough to renegotiate EU arrangements or withdraw Germany from them? Will they persist long enough to push through constitutional amendments that define Germany as the homeland of the German people and allow legal redress against leaders who attempt demographic replacement?

Whether or not there is a pause in the influx, Germans and other Europeans should educate themselves about the deep causes of this disaster and how to prevent its recurrence.



[i] Phillip Hudson, “Europe must follow our lead on turnbacks: Abbott”, The Australian, 28 Oct. 2015, p. 2.

[ii] Rummel, R. J. (1997). “Is collective violence correlated with social pluralism?” Journal of Peace Research 34(3): 163-176.

[iii] Vanhanen, T. (2012). Ethnic conflicts: Their biological roots in ethnic nepotism. London, Ulster Institute for Social Research.

[iv] Dinesen, P. T. and K. M. Soenerskov (2015). “Ethnic diversity and social trust: Evidence from the micro-context.” American Sociological Review. DOI: 10.1177/0003122415577989.

[v] Salter, F. K. and H. Harpending (2013). “J. P. Rushton’s theory of ethnic nepotism.” Personality and Individual Differences 55: 256-260.

[vi] Arbatli, C. E., Q. Ashraf and O. Galor (2015). The nature of conflict. National Bureau of Economic Research Working Paper No. 21079. Abstract:, text:

[vii] Interview of Tino Sanandaji by Margaret Wente, “Sweden’s ugly immigration problem”, The Globe and Mail [Canada], 11 Sept. 2015.

And see Swedish National Council for Crime Prevention (2005). Crime among people born in Sweden and abroad (Swedish).

[viii] Danish Statistical Yearbook, 2015:

[ix] In 2014 Germany received 44,000 applications for asylum. It accepted 6,995 applications for asylum and rejected 37,340.,_2014_(number,_rounded_figures)_YB15_IV.png

[x] Assaults rose from 3,863 to 9,655, shoplifting from 4,974 to 13,894. Nick Cater, “Nightmare behind the diversity dream revealed”, The Australian, 13 Oct. 2015, p. 12.

[xi] UK Office for National Statistics. “How much gross debt did the EU28 countries have in 2013?”

[xii] Interview of Sanandaji.

[xiii] Sanderson, S. K. and T. Vanhanen (2004). Reconciling the differences between Sanderson’s and Vanhanen’s results. Welfare, ethnicity, and altruism. New data and evolutionary theory. F. K. Salter (ed.). London, Frank Cass: 119-120.

[xiv] Salter, F. K. (2004). Ethnic diversity, foreign aid, economic growth, social stability, and population policy: A perspective on W. Masters and M. McMillan’s findings. Op cit.

[xv] Sarrazin, Thilo (2010). Deutschland schafft sich ab: Wie wir unser Land aufs Spiel setzen [Germany abolishes itself: How we risk losing our country]. Berlin, Deutsche Verlags-Anstalt.

[xvi] Herrnstein, R. and C. Murray (1994). The bell curve. Intelligence and class structure in American life. New York, Free Press.

Gottfredson, L. S. (1997). “Why g matters: The complexity of everyday life.” Intelligence 24(1): 79-132.

[xvii] Lynn, R. (2005). Race differences in intelligence: An evolutionary analysis. Augusta, GA, Washington Summit Publishers.

[xviii] Duchesne, R. (2015). “The Greek-Roman invention of civic identity versus the current demotion of European identity.” The Occidental Quarterly 15(3): 37-71.

[xix] The Interior Minister was Dr. Thomas de Maizière. “Die Fluechtlinge”, Radio BR2, “Tagesgesprech”, 14 Sept. 2015.

[xx] Basic Law for the Federal Republic of Germany.

[xxi] The Merkel government suspended the Dublin Regulation on 24 August 2015, to allow Syrian refugees to be processed and accepted by Germany.

[xxii] In early October 1915, Merkel sidelined de Maizière from the leadership of a new department charged with managing the immigrant crisis. He had been critical of immigrant behaviour and the way the intake was being managed, so Merkel appointed someone closer to her who could be trusted to share her enthusiasm for keeping Germany’s door unconditionally open.

[xxiii] Bojan Pancevski, “Ghosts of Gastarbeiter prime Germany for influx”, The Sunday Times, reprinted in The Australian, 14 Sept. 2015, p. 7.

[xxiv] Botho Strauss: “I would rather live in a dying but vital people than in one mixed with foreign peoples . . . to be rejuvenated by mainly economic and demographic speculation.” Quoted in Pancevski, “Merkel fights to keep door open as German fear of migrants grows”, op cit.

[xxv] “Merkel defends migrant stand”, The Weekend Australian, 2-3 January 2016, p. 10.

Now It’s Indigenous-Only Constitutional Conventions

(This comment was originally posted on on 24 August 2015. At that time Tony Abbott was Prime Minister. The principles discussed are still valid, including the implied suggestion that governments elected on a conservative platform are duty bound to carry out that platform.)


24 August 2015:

Once again Tony Abbott’s sound instincts have been overwhelmed by Australia’s inverted ethnic hierarchy.

The federal government has caved into Noel Pearson’s demand for indigenous Australians to have their own series of constitutional conventions, funded by tax payers. The remainder of the population will be offered mixed “mainstream” meetings.[1] The two sets of consultative meetings will be conducted in parallel. Mr Abbott’s first impulse was to keep the meetings inclusive, to avoid a “them and us” procedure. He has retreated from this wise caution, though he did maintain a stand against holding the indigenous conventions before the mainstream meetings.

The agreement to fund indigenous-only forums is a dangerous precedent. Consider how it might lead to other demands.

It could be argued that, while all citizens should participate in discussing the Recognise proposals, Anglo Australians have a special duty to do so because they connect us to our colonial past and remain at the heart of our national identity. At the same time they are the majority of the population, the leading culture in numbers and links to the nation’s past. The argument could continue by asserting that as the leading culture Anglo Australians have a special responsibility to correct past wrongs and protect the national interest. Such a special role was implicitly recognised in the Expert Panel appointed by the Gillard Government, which consisted largely of indigenous and Anglo Australians.

Fairness and symbolism (though not common sense) would seem to dictate that if indigenous Australians have their own forums, Anglo Australians should have theirs, because it is their burden of guilt for alleged past wrongs that the recognise campaign is designed to correct. Australia was a consciously British-derived society until after well after the Second World War.

If the prospect of Anglo-only conventions seems outrageously discriminatory, why did our Prime Minister agree to indigenous-only ones? Will the media highlight instances of non-indigenous Australians being barred from meetings or prevented from speaking? Will bureaucrats establish a working group to accredit attendees by race? Perhaps badges will be issued showing a large “I” for indigenous people, and an “O” for other ethnicities. No, that would be too easy to fake. Can we look forward to federal police at the door checking racial ID? DNA tests can now be done quickly.

The government’s decision to racially segregate discussion of the Recognise campaign – that is the reality – should shock Australians. But it is part of a wider trend of privileging indigenous activists. Indigenous Australians now have their own free-to-air television channel, a privilege denied other ethnic groups. Every day, school students across the nation are subjected to indoctrination that symbolically dispossesses their people. In a country with dozens of ethnic groups – multicultural Australia – students sit through “acknowledgement of country” rituals in which the land is designated as belonging to a tiny minority. There is no mention of the nation’s pioneers and settlers, of those who explored, named, and forged modern Australia. School assemblies do not affirm most students’ place in Australia.

The government’s decision to further racialise an already discriminatory recognition process is akin to its back-down on reform of section 18c of the Racial Discrimination Act. That surrender was made in the face of fierce lobbying from the multicultural community and its “progressive” allies.[2] The government has sound instincts but was let down by intellectual weakness in the field of ethnic affairs, which can be traced to the politicisation of the humanities and social sciences since the 1960s.[3]

It’s time the government began to think about the Recognise campaign outside the box. A good start would be for Tony Abbott to trust his instincts.


[1] Rebecca Puddy, “Recognition show ‘back on the rails’” The Australian 21 August 2015, p. 7.

[2] Salter, F. K. (2014). Multiculturalism: Divide and concur. Quadrant Online. 28 March.

[3] Salter, F. K. (2012). “The war against human nature III-2: Australia and the national question, part II: Race and the nation in the universities.” Quadrant 56(11 (491)): 36-44.


Towards a Ministry of Emigration – Australian citizenship and domestic terrorism

(This is an edited version of a submission to the government inquiry into Citizenship Policy, conducted by the Department of Immigration and Border Protection, June 2015.)


The Commonwealth Government has called on Australians to express their views on how citizenship law might be changed to make Australia a safer and more cohesive society. This follows the alarming development of home-grown Islamic terrorism. Over the last several years many Australian citizens, all of Islamic identity, have attempted or planned terrorism against their fellow citizens. Last year lone radicalised Muslims attacked police officers in Melbourne and murdered a hostage in the Lindt Cafe seige in Sydney. The situation shows signs of escalating, with perhaps one hundred young Australians of Islamic background currently fighting for the terrorist group Islamic State (or ISIS), in Syria and Iraq. Many more have been prevented by the authorities from travelling to that part of the world, on suspicion that they were also intending to volunteer for ISIS forces.

Apart from the atrocities being committed in the Middle East, there is the real danger that terrorist practices will be brought back to Australia by hardened jihadists. That would be a tragic escalation of the amateurish attacks already committed. Recently the Minister for Immigration stated that the terrorist threat to Australia “will get much worse before it gets much better”. [i]  He is not alone. Counter-terrorism agencies warn that the threat is generational. The former head of the Army, Peter Leahy, has warned that Australia faces a savage 100 year war. [ii] So it is timely that the Government seeks opinions on how it might repair national unity as a means of preventing or reducing terrorism on Australian soil. The Department of Immigration and Border Protection has distributed a discussion paper to canvass issues and pose questions.[iii] The discussion paper proposes to address these problem in two ways, firstly by measures aimed at making citizenship a stronger social glue, and secondly by stripping terrorists of citizenship as a means of preventing them from returning to Australia. The first is inadequate, the second too narrowly conceived.

Citizenship and social cohesion

The discussion paper reviews the many attempts to deploy citizenship – a legal and administrative concept – to bind Australians together. A brief historical review lists six initiatives, beginning in 1993, mostly intended to unite a fragmenting society. The list is worth quoting to show how the desperate theme of unity recurs:

1993: Changes to the Australian Citizenship Act 1948 to recognise Australian citizenship as a common bond uniting all Australians and involving reciprocal rights and obligations.

1993: Introduction of the Pledge of Commitment to ensure new citizens commit to the Australian nation and people.

2001: Launch of Australian Citizenship Day . . . to increase community awareness of Australian citizenship.

2002: Changes to allow . . . [dual citizenship]

2006: Introduction of the Parliament and Civics Education Rebate, which helps schools bring students in Years 4–12 to Canberra on a civics and citizenship education excursion.

2007: A new Australian Citizenship Act written in plain English and a citizenship test to ensure prospective citizens appreciate Australia’s laws and values.

2009: Agreement to Civics and Citizenship under the Australian Curriculum to reinforce understanding of what it means to be an Australian citizen. . . . [iv]

There are two gaps in this chronology. The original citizenship act of 1948 is not listed, perhaps because there was little need to counteract social fragmentation at that time. And there is no mention of the Immigration Restriction Act of 1901, which consolidated restrictions established decades earlier by the separate colonies. The Act was explicitly aimed at maintaining a unified nation and it did so, in effect, by keeping ethno-religious diversity to a minimum. Calling it the “White Australia Policy” misses the point that it was aimed at assimilation intended to avoid the social fragmentation that now bedevils Australia. However compromised and clumsy its administration it was a prudent nation-building policy that formed one of the most cohesive, relaxed and democratic societies in the world, one that united populations scattered across a continent. That had changed by 1990 as the burden of diversity increased.

There is a fundamental difference between the policies that produced cohesion and the ones that did not. The 1901 and 1948 acts assumed that cohesion is an organic property of populations, the result of shared origins, cultures and historical memories. In preparing the ground for future national unity, Australia was in line with the liberalism of J. S. Mill[v] and the civic nationalism of other Western societies. For example in France the great nineteenth century scholar Ernest Renan emphasised the importance of shared memories contributing to a “moral conscience” that helps nations resist world government. The foundational Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen of 1789 predicated citizenship on French nationality.[vi] The anti-national left has accused even these doctrines, that formally separated nationality from ethnicity, of racism, as they do any rationale that would restrict immigration to the West.[vii]

In tune with this radical critique Australia now relies on citizenship to bind the population, based on the assumption that cohesion is a social construct, a matter of legal definition and social engineering. The government discussion paper exemplifies this approach when it declares that adherence to “core Australian values” will bind citizens together and ventures to assert those values in a list that bears a striking resemblance to elements of the English liberal tradition. [viii] The paper does not cite any legal authority mandating these values. By which principle is citizenship, a legal conception, bound to those values? Australia is a democracy where freedom of thought and speech mean that anything the majority believes or feels automatically becomes a “core Australian value”. Should the majority’s mind or its identity change, values once considered “core” could seem dated, even repugnant. “Sharia Australia” is not a contradiction in terms.

The discussion paper failed to state the basic truth that endemic home-grown terrorism demonstrates a failure of multiculturalist policies. This admission should have been the starting point of the discussion. Errant policies include large scale unrestricted immigration and reliance on citizenship to create social cohesion. The fact that neither side of politics admits the abject failure of ethnic pluralism, as it has been imposed on Australians without due political process for the last several decades, indicates the breadth of the problem. The political class as a whole seems unacquainted with elementary scholarship concerning ethnicity and nationalism.

For example, missing from the discussion paper, and presumably from the Cabinet, is the distinction between state and nation. [ix] A state is a set of institutions which together possess a monopoly on the use of legitimate force within a circumscribed territory. A state can be many things – an empire, a kingdom, a city state, a confederation, a democracy or a one party dictatorship. But a state is not a nation, though it can contain one or more. A nation is a named population with shared origins, elements of shared culture, living in its historical homeland. Most nations have grown around a founding ethnicity, a named population with shared ancestry, shared history, a distinctive shared culture, shared attachment to the homeland, and some degree of solidarity.[x] Some nations, such as the Japanese, Koreans, and many European nations, consist largely of this simple ethnic type. The founding nation provides identity, language, founding myths, political structures, way of life and a story of social capital – a degree of solidarity. While the core ethnicity feels secure, unthreatened by rapid demographic change or loss of territory, it can tolerate immigration and some diversification. After all, the nation is the largest secular category able to elicit robust solidarity. But the social glue weakens and conflict proliferates when the majority feels insecure, when the ethnic core is swamped by immigrants to the extent that observers see it undergoing cultural genocide, as in Australia,[xi] or when it is subjected to the inverted ethnic hierarchy imposed by multiculturalism.

The distinction between state and nation is relevant to the present theme because the member of a state is a citizen, legally defined by a piece of paper, while the member of a nation is organically defined by identity and psychological ties, like a family. Citizenship is a currency that confers rights and formal duties on individuals. But it cannot forge an emotional bond except over generations, as nations do. Identity and loyalty cannot be bought. They must evolve.[xii] The distinction has been mute for much of our history because one of the greatest gifts bequeathed to Australia from its British progenitors was the marriage of state and nation. The individual colonies and then the Commonwealth were states containing and acting in the corporate interests of a particular people, which had awakened to national consciousness in the second half of the nineteenth century. Among its first conscious actions was to create the Federation as its instrument. Being part of the English civic tradition, the Commonwealth also provided citizenship to individuals of all backgrounds. Nevertheless, the Commonwealth was forged to be the nation’s instrument. It was not the Commonwealth’s legal tender that caused its far-flung parts to cohere but the nation’s primordial bonds.

These principles contrast with cultural Marxist theory commonly taught in our universities, such as the theory that nations are nothing more than “imagined communities”[xiii] and the thesis that national traditions are invented and therefore not authentic.[xiv] One influential Australian university text finds no value in Australian nationhood, and recommends that the Commonwealth dissolve the nation using mass immigration and the shaming of whites by the education system.[xv] In all these theories states socially engineer nations to exert control over their populations. What the state gives, the state can take away. Citizenship is the identity with agency, while ethnicity is unimportant, unless it belongs to victim minorities. These assumptions underlie the multicultural plan to use school curricula to erase Australia’s Anglo history from young minds and substitute different symbols, a plan well advanced.[xvi] Due to left dominance of the universities, such notions are more commonly accepted by those with a university education.[xvii]

Now that Australia is diverse and undergoing rapid ethnic change, the distinction between state and nation has come to the fore. The high levels of unrestricted immigration that are transforming society have been justified by the assertion that citizenship can substitute for organic ties of nationhood, a doctrine that cannot explain falling volunteer rates,[xviii] rising ethnic polarisation and violence. The discussion paper indicates that our political leadership wishes citizenship to create a community of sentiment that feels like a nation, though based on a shallow fabricated civic identity. But identity and attachment cannot be legislated. Only organic communities based on shared memories, culture, religion and origins can produce that.

A recent example of the brittleness of citizenship is the out-of-the-blue nativist remarks by sports legend Dawn Fraser. In early July 2015 Fraser, an Anglo Australian, was on live television criticising the unsportsmanlike behaviour of two Australian tennis players at Wimbledon. Nick Kyrgios and Bernard Tomic are both children of immigrants. Fraser concluded: “If they don’t like it, go back to where their fathers or parents came from. You know, we don’t need them here in this country to act like that. We’ve got to set a very good example for the younger children playing all these sports.”[xix] Though Fraser had no history of intolerance or ethnic nationalism in her long career as sports commentator, she was labelled racist by academic experts, who pointed out that her words implied that “some Australians are not as Australian as others, or that some Australians were ‘disposable’ because they did not meet some unstated criteria of race or cultural background.” Australia’s Race Discrimination Commissioner stated that Fraser’s words were unacceptable because they differed from the official doctrine that immigrants and their children are welcome.

Fraser’s words reveal the gulf separating national identity and citizenship, especially in terms of loyalty. Loyalty is only tested when it exerts a cost. Fraser’s sense of sporting honour was offended and she considered Kyrgios and Tomic’s behaviour to be harmful to their young fans. They were costs too great to bear, and she wished they would return to their parents’ homelands. Their citizenship did not bind Fraser to them. Implicit in Fraser’s judgment was the (true) perception that Kyrgios and Tomic had immigrant ethnic identities, a perception they share. She did not believe the mantra that all non-indigenous Australians are immigrants. Kyrgios’ and Tomic’s  markers of national identity – speaking the vernacular, growing up in Australia – were discounted by Fraser once she perceived the two to be disloyal and dishonourable in sport. All that was left of their Australianness, for Fraser, was citizenship. What a weak glue it proved to be. The question is whether Fraser’s beliefs about national identity are idiosyncratic or a feature of her generation? Would large numbers of Australians show similar attitudes to immigrants and their children should the latter begin to hurt national pride or security? Conversely, how many immigrants are as estranged from Australian identity and values as the two tennis stars?

To answer the questions posed in the discussion paper, tinkering with citizenship tests and conditions but will not produce the domestic security Australians expect government to provide.

Stripping citizenship

The policy of stripping citizenship from terrorists resembles the tough measures taken in the past during wartime. During the two world wars recent immigrants from belligerent nations were interned as a precaution against fifth column activity, i.e. treason. Also interned during the Second World War were citizens who had expressed ideological sympathy for Germany or Japan. The new proposal to banish terrorists is more justified than internment because it would be directed at individuals who had actually committed disloyal acts. For that reason the policy is sure to prevent some extremists from returning to Australia, an outcome for which it should be praised.

Nevertheless, the policy is also dangerous, firstly to civil liberties and secondly because it creates the illusion that banishment of jihadists solves the problem.

Stripping terrorists of their citizenship might seem appropriate in the present circumstance. However, if the procedure becomes a normal policy instrument it will place great arbitrary power in the hands of the minister who exercises it. Such an action should be conducted by judicial process.

The policy could also create a false sense of security. It has a dramatic war-time appearance but does not go to the root cause of the problem, which is the failure of multiculturalism and the unrestricted immigration it legitimates.

The root problem is ethno-religious diversity, which degrades public altruism and makes societies vulnerable to external shocks both economic and political.[xx] Wars happen. The greater the diversity, the greater the risk that some citizens will feel greater loyalty to a belligerent overseas power than to Australia. That is why German- and Japanese-Australians were interned. That was an example of diversity presenting risks in wartime. Overseas fighters usually are not supporting Australia’s enemies. Examples include Croatian-Australians fighting in Yugoslavia in the 1970s and in 2015 Sudanese-Australians serving in Sudan’s civil war.[xxi] Nevertheless, the effect is often to import division and bitterness to Australia. The present day Islamic community’s production of home-grown terrorists and overseas fighters is not aberrant but consistent with historical precedent.

The difference is that Muslims in Australia are channelling a global conflict that experts predict will last for generations. It is true that only a small minority of Muslims is inclined to terrorism and foreign jihad. But that minority emerges spontaneously from the larger population of peaceful Muslims, even from within otherwise peaceful families. They are part and parcel of a broader Islamic community. The handful of jihadists not of Islamic origin invariably convert to that religion as part of the radicalisation process. Islamic identity is a necessary condition of radicalisation for jihadist terrorism. Deradicalisation measures have not prevented the uptake of ISIS ideology. At present the scale of the threat is proportional to the size of the Muslim population.

Preventing a few dozen hardened terrorists from returning to Australia would be beneficial but insufficient to make Australians secure within the country’s borders, as demonstrated by the incidents in Melbourne and Sydney. That can only be addressed by reducing Muslim immigration and promoting the voluntary emigration of some of those already here.

That project would be aided by establishing a “department of emigration” that managed the voluntary resettlement of Islamic Australians in suitable countries. That would yield greater benefits than punitive banishment alone. A department specialising in culturally-sensitive resettlement would be an administrative safety valve should an act of mass terrorism or endemic low-level attacks destabilise community relations and lead to heightened polarisation or even reprisals. Even without the historically-based conflicts involving Islam, some tension between Muslims and non-Muslims would be normal because their interaction constitutes ethno-religious heterogeneity (diversity), which tends to produce conflict. A recent cross-national comparison of 176 countries by Finnish sociologist Tatu Vanhanen found that the level of domestic conflict correlates strongly–81%–with ethno-cultural heterogeneity. Examples of conflict in Australia involving Muslims not directly related to jihadism include the ethnic violence at Cronulla in 2005 as well as anti-social behaviour on both sides.[xxii]

“White flight” began occurring in Australia as high levels of immigration transformed local communities whose wishes and aspirations were never ascertained. It did not help that the new colonists possessed Australian citizenship. This began well before the advent of terrorism.[xxiii] Perhaps, as Australia’s diversity turns ugly, other ethno-religious populations, including Islamic Australians, will also wish to escape the failure of Australia’s “bold experiment” in ethnic diversification,[xxiv] and resettle in a less fractious society. The multicultural formula for preventing domestic conflict is failing. The multicultural lobby calls for racial vilification laws intended to shame the white majority and limit their freedom to object, but remain silent when the violence and hatred comes from minorities. A department of emigration would provide government with more options for responding in a principled and fair way to a fractured community. By arranging new citizenship it would also ease legal and humanitarian difficulties with stripping sole citizenship from terrorists.[xxv]

Since the advent of multiculturalism and replacement-level migration, Australia has been losing the allegiance of growing numbers of citizens. Tinkering with citizenship tests, or lecturing people about which values they ought to embrace, or banishing a few dozen fighters who identify more with an overseas country than with Australia, none of that will much reduce the risk of terrorism or ethnic conflict in general. That can only be accomplished by policies that reduce ethno-religious diversity and increase the attractions of assimilation, policies that affect immigration, emigration and restoring the status of Australia’s ethnic majority.


The crisis of home-grown terrorism has revealed fundamental flaws in the policy of multiculturalism and the unrestricted mass immigration it is used to justify. The policy instrument of citizenship is wholly inadequate to redress those flaws, which can only be healed by policies aimed at reducing ethno-religious diversity and restoring the status of the historic nation – Anglo-Celtic Australia. These include returning to restrictive small-scale immigration, the orderly repatriation of high-risk populations and the democratisation of multiculturalism through the full recognition and inclusion of Australia’s core ethnicity.



[i] “This will get much worse: Dutton’”, The Australian, 29 June 2015, pp. 1, 6.

[ii] “Terror threat ‘will outlast ISIS’”, The Australian, 29 June 2015, pp. 1, 6.

[iii] Australian Citizenship – Your Rights, Your Responsibilities. Department of Immigration and Border Protection, Belconnen ACT, 2014.

[iv] Australian Citizenship, p. 3.

[v] Mill, J. S. (1960). Chapter XVI: On nationality. Representative government. Three essays by John Stuart Mill. J. S. Mill. London, Oxford University Press: 380-388.

Griffiths, P. (2002). Towards White Australia: The shadow of Mill and the spectre of slavery in the 1880s debates on Chinese immigration. Paper presented to the 11th Biennial National Conference of the Australian Historical Association, Brisbane, 4 July.

[vi] Ernest Renan, “What is a Nation?”, text of a conference delivered at the Sorbonne on March 11th, 1882, in Ernest Renan, Qu’est-ce qu’une nation?, Paris, Presses-Pocket, 1992. (translated by Ethan Rundell),

[vii] Balibar, E. and I. Wallerstein (1991/1988). Race, nation, class: Ambiguous identities. London, Verso.

Silverstein, M. (1992). Deconstructing the nation: Immigration, racism and citizenship in modern France. London, Routledge.

Balibar, E. and I. Wallerstein (1991/1988). Race, nation, class: Ambiguous identities. London, Verso.

[viii] Australian Citizenship, p. 2.

[ix] Connor, W. (1978). “A nation is a nation, is a state, is an ethnic group, is a . . .” Ethnic and Racial Studies 1(4): 378-400.

[x] Smith, A. D. (1986). The ethnic origins of nations. Oxford, Basil Blackwell, pp. 22-30.

[xi] Sheridan, G. (2014). “Constitutional change will divide not unite the nation”, The Australian, 20 September.

[xii] Salter, F. K. (2002). Ethnic nepotism as a two-edged sword: The risk-mitigating role of ethnicity among mafiosi, nationalist fighters, middleman, and dissidents. Risky transactions. Kinship, ethnicity, and trust. F. K. Salter. Oxford and New York, Berghahn: 243-89, pp. 246-8.

[xiii] Anderson, B. R. O. G. (1983). Imagined communities. Reflections on the origin and spread of nationalism. London, Verso Editions.

[xiv] Hobsbawm, E. and T. Ranger, Eds. (1992/1983). The invention of tradition. Cambridge, Cambridge University Press.

[xv] Castles, S., B. Cope, M. Kalantzis and M. Morrissey (1992). Mistaken identity: Multiculturalism and the demise of nationalism in Australia. Sydney, Pluto Press, p. 367.

[xvi] Jakubowicz, A. (2011). “Empires of the Sun: Towards a post-multicultural Australian politics.” Cosmopolitan Civil Societies Journal 3(1): 65-85.

[xvii] Betts, K. (1999). The great divide. Sydney, Duffy & Snellgrove.

[xviii] Volunteers decline for the first time: Australian Bureau of Statistics”, SMH 3 July 2015.–australian-bureau-of-statistics-20150703-gi47cw.html.

Healy, E. (2007). “Ethnic diversity and social cohesion in Melbourne.” People and Place 15(4): 49-64.

Putnam, R. D. (2007). “E Pluribus Unum: Diversity and community in the twenty-first century.” The 2006 Johan Skytte Prize lecture.” Scandinavian Political Studies 30: 137-174.

[xix] Angus Holland, “Dawn Fraser’s comments about Kyrgios and Tomic were racist, say experts”, SMH, 7 July 2015.

[xx] Dinesen, P. T. and K. M. Soenerskov (2015). “Ethnic diversity and social trust: Evidence from the micro-context.” American Sociological Review. 21 April. DOI: 10.1177/0003122415577989.

Leigh, A. (2006). “Diversity, trust and redistribution.” Dialogue: Academy of Social Sciences in Australia 25(3): 43-49.

Putnam, R. D. (2007). “E Pluribus Unum”, op cit.

Salter, F. K., Ed. (2004). Welfare, ethnicity, & altruism: New data & evolutionary theory. London, Frank Cass.

Salter, F. K. (2013). The humanitarian costs of Western multiculturalism. Materials of the Baku International Humanitarian Forum 2012. Baku, pp. 518-524,


[xxi] “Violence reaches beyond war-torn homeland”, The Australian, 11 Aug. 2015, p. 2. “[A]n sense of community between the rival groups in Australia had dissolved. . . . [T]ensions were rising in Australia and brawls had broken out.”

[xxii] T. Vanhanen (2012). Ethnic conflicts: Their biological roots in ethnic nepotism. London, Ulster Institute for Social Research.

“Police hailed for action on race-hate assaults”, The Australian, 8 Oct. 2014, p. 5. Report of anti-Muslim abuse.

Sheridan, G. (2011). “How I lost faith in multiculturalism”, The Australian. 2 April. Sydney, News Limited. Sheridan reports instances of anti-social behaviour by Muslims and attributes this partly to Islam itself.

[xxiii] Healey, E. and B. Birrell (2003). “Metropolis divided: The political dynamic of spatial inequality and migrant settlement in Sydney.” People and Place 11(2): 65-87.

Report of a study conducted by the NSW Secondary Principals Council: “White flight leaves system segregated by race”, The Sydney Morning Herald, 10 March 2008.

Report of research conducted by Dr. Christine Ho at the University of Technology Sydney in 2011: “Fears over ‘white flight’ from selective schools”, The Sydney Morning Herald, 17 October 2011.

[xxiv] Lack, J. and J. Templeton (1995). Bold experiment. A documentary history of Australian immigration since 1945. Melbourne, Oxford University Press.

“Racism hits mental health of victims”, The Australian, 20 November 2012, p. 5.

[xxv] “Terror sights set on sole nationals”, The Weekend Australian, 27-28 June, 2015, p. 1.

The ALP and the two ethnic-state solution for the Middle East

The Australian Labor Party (ALP) is split over policy towards the Middle East. The Party’s centre-right faction is generally supportive of Israel while the left faction supports Palestinian rights and is critical of Israel’s construction of settlements on the occupied West Bank. However, both factions implicitly support the Jewish and Palestinian people having their own states. They differ only in the speed with which the two state solution should be activated.

It is astounding that any major faction of the ALP supports ethnic states because in domestic politics the Party is vehemently opposed to Australia preserving its European identity. The Party wishes a state for the Palestinian nation at the same time that it participates in turning the Australian state against the nation that created it. Until the late 1960s the ALP fiercely supported the White Australia Policy. The policy ethnically restricted immigration to accelerate assimilation and maintain a white majority. At the same time the policy helped protect wages by regulating the supply of labour, especially from low-wage countries. That changed when the Party’s leadership was replaced by university-educated professionals, beginning with Gough Whitlam. Since then the Party has supported multiculturalism of the most aggressive kind, that effectively subordinates Anglo Australians while garnering minority votes, in part by offering unrestricted immigration.

The left-right support for ethnic states in the Middle East was made clear in a recent controversy within ALP ranks.[i] In early September 2015 the Queensland branch advocated that Australia immediately recognise a Palestinian state. Queensland ALP vice-president Wendy Turnbull claimed that Israel was falling out of favour in social democratic parties around the world due to its persecution of the Palestinian people.  The response, she said, was to support “the Palestinian people and their rights to a sovereign state of their own alongside Israel”. Palestinians are an ethnic group, so Turnbull was proposing an ethnic state, just as Israel declares itself to be the Jewish state. That could be described as the two ethnic-state solution. The centre-right also supports this formula, but does not see the need to hurry the process.

It is significant that the Labor left implicitly supports a two ethnic-state solution to the Israel-Palestine conflict while condemning Israel for aggressive actions. It seems they do not consider ethnic states inherently aggressive or otherwise ethically unsound, at least in the Middle East. At the same time the Party has moved to counteract the influence of what is seen in Labor circles as a powerful Israel lobby, by requiring Labor officials who accept subsidised travel to Israel to spend equal time in Palestinian areas.

Again, this is astounding, because Labor does not speak up for fair representation of white interests, for example in order to democratise multiculturalism in Australia. If the Labor or Liberal parties applied their domestic policies to the Middle East, they would call for a unitary state of Jews and Arabs and condemn the majority’s concern about losing ethnic control of the state. Indeed, they would urge the opening of the state’s borders to immigration and refugees in an effort to diversity the population and promote multiculturalism.

It can be difficult to discern rhyme, reason or principle in Australian attitudes to ethnicity and nationalism.


[i] Troy Bramston, “ALP peace shattered on Mid East policy”, The Australian, 1 Sept. 2015, p. 3.

Junge Freiheit interview: Social Costs of Diversity

The liberal-conservative magazine Junge Freiheit (Young Freedom), based in Berlin, has published an interview with Frank Salter on the subject of genetic interests and the social costs of ethnic diversity. The German version was published in August 2015. It can be read here.

The English version is posted below. Though the interview was conducted in mid 2014, its theme is now more topical than ever as the German government is accepting hundreds of thousands of refugees from Africa and the Middle East. When the crisis began, the German police union urged the government to suspend the Schengen Treaty that disallows border checks within the European Union, because they were being overwhelmed by the numbers of refugees. The Merkel government responded by maintaining Schengen and suspending a treaty provision that refugees must return to the first country arrived at. This effectively cleared the way for a mass migration of Africans and Middle Easterners in Italy and Greece to the wealthy welfare states of Northern Europe. For the first time visible minorities are evident in small towns as well as cities throughout Germany.

The interview:

  1. Dr. Salter, you argue that all humans have a vital interest in genetic continuity and that this is threatened by mass migration. Could you explain your thesis!

The theoretical background for this statement comes from evolutionary biology, as set out in my book On Genetic Interests: Family, Ethnicity & Humanity in an Age of Mass Migration. Humans, like all species, are evolved to reproduce. Individual survival is not the point but genetic continuity is. We know this through studies of altruism, initially by the English ethologist William Hamilton in the 1960s. Biologically speaking, parents have a “genetic interest” in their children. That explains, in evolutionary terms, why parents usually invest emotionally and materially in their children. Each child carries half of each parent’s genes. So each child is a store of the parents‘ genes. That is why parental behaviour evolved. We also share genes with members of our ethnic groups, typically at the level of first cousins. This was first shown by Hamilton in the early 1970s and confirmed by American geneticist Henry Harpending. Ethnic groups can number in the millions, so we have a much larger aggregate genetic interest (kinship) in them than in our families. Immigration by genetically different people reduces the long-term size of the original gene pool in its home territory. Carried to an extreme, as is happening in many Western societies, immigration displaces a significant proportion of the original gene pool. This is maladaptive in the evolutionary sense.

  1. Irenäus Eibl-Eibesfeldt calls your work “persuasive, but the policy formulations are provocative”. Do you see any politically provocative potential of your thesis?

My thesis is provocative to some because it runs counter to the prejudices of the mainstream social sciences and leftist political culture. For political reasons, biology was largely driven out of such disciplines as sociology, anthropology and political science beginning in the 1920s and 1930s. That is still largely true today. Although my subject matter is society and politics the analysis of genetic interests sprang from ethology and sociobiology, including many years working at the Max Planck Forschungsstelle for Human Ethology headed by Eibl-Eibesfeldt.

  1. “Genetic Continuity” is a term, which is understood in Germany as part of the Nazi-ideology. Could you explain why this is a false understanding.

I have never heard the term attributed to the Nazis. I doubt the Nazis would be so notorious if they merely sought continuity. They were not so modest, talking instead about conquest. I took the term from evolutionary biology, in which continuity is the minimum adaptive goal. The alternative, competitive breeding, is inappropriate in a crowded world. In my own theory genetic continuity is an interest possessed by everyone, without privilege.

But if Hitler did talk about continuity, why would that be significant? He also talked about peace. Does that make pacifism suspect? Conversely, the Soviets denied the efficacy of genes throughout the 1930s and 1940s. Why should that influence our epistemology or vocabulary? Allowing our thinking to be influenced by monsters is not the path to understanding.

  1. If your thesis is right, the multicultural society-model could not work, correct? Why not?

I argue that multiculturalism can be made to work with sufficient social controls. The questions I raised were whether it is compatible with genetic interests and with liberal democracy. I suggested that the conditions needed to produce these compatibilities are impracticable. Genetically that is because multiculturalism legitimates permanent mass immigration, which increases the size of minorities at the cost of the majority. Politically, the cause is the costs of ethno-cultural diversity. One cost of rising diversity is ethnic conflict, using “conflict” in the broad sense to mean not only violence (civil war, coups, secession) but also polarisation and competition in the political and economic spheres. The fact that ethnocultural diversity promotes conflict is why societies that adopt multiculturalism usually erect a coercive and indoctrination apparatus to regulate free speech and discrimination. A partial exception is the United States, where free speech is protected by the First Amendment, though there are powerful informal social controls known colloquially as “political correctness”.

  1. But ethnicity is historical a consequence of random amalgamation (intermixture) processes. So, how can ethnicity have an “interest”? Societies (even multicultural) can have an interest, but not ethnicities!?

It is true that ethnogenesis involves the amalgamation of smaller populations. But the process is not random. Whether one considers the Han Chinese, the Koreans, the English, the French, or the Zulus, ethnic amalgamation takes place among closely related neighbouring populations. The result is a new ethnicity with substantial genetic and cultural similarities. A recent example is the emergence of large ethnicities in the United States, formed from closely related cultures, such as “white Americans”, “black Americans”, and “Jewish Americans”.

  1. Ethnicities are also fragmented in social, cultural and religious groups – where is the difference to multicultural fragmentation of society?

Belief in descent from common ancestors lies at the heart of ethnic identity, as observed by Max Weber in the late 19th century. Meta-ethnicities such as the Germans, English and Han are aware of their common origins despite cultural differences. That cannot be said of multicultural societies formed from immigrants from around the world.

  1. Benjamin Disraeli said (about 19th century ethnically homogeneous Britain): “The rich and the poor: Two nations between whom there is no intercourse and no sympathy; who are as ignorant of each other’s habits, thoughts, and feelings, as if they were dwellers in different zones, or inhabitants of different planets.” Doesn’t that show that ethnical homogeneous societies are in fact not more homogeneous than others!?

Britain was and is a multi-national kingdom consisting of England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland, and once Cornwall etc. For the last two centuries a meta identity has been emerging, “British”. Disraeli was incorrect to call the “rich and the poor” two nations; they are classes. Multicultural societies also have classes, to which they add ethnic differences, which makes them more prone to division than ethnic nations. Worse still, for various reasons, multicultural societies typically show some stratification among ethnicities, as in the U.S., Mexico, Brazil, Britain, Germany, France, Australia, Philippines, etc. Ethnic stratification is highly divisive yet seems inevitable as diversity rises. As ethnic inequality is not primarily due to racism it cannot be remedied by coercive social controls preferred by multiculturalists.

  1. You say: “More ethnically homogeneous nations are better able to build public goods, have higher productivity , develop social and economic capital faster”. What is the reason and what are the scientific proofs?

See below.

  1. You also say: “Ethnically homogeneous nations are more democratic, less corrupt and unequal, more trusting and care more for the disadvantaged, have lower crime rates, are more resistant to external shocks, and are better global citizens, for example by giving more foreign aid.” Again: What is the reason and what are the scientific proofs?

Allow me to answer these two questions together. For the evidence readers should consult my edited books, Welfare, Ethnicity & Altruism: New Data & Evolutionary Theory, (Frank Cass) and Risky Transactions: Trust, Kinship & Ethnicity (Berghahn). The conclusions you quote are based on studies reported in those books. Interestingly, the studies were inspired by the evolutionary hypothesis that altruism and trust would emerge more easily in homogeneous than heterogeneous societies, due to shared ethnic identity. Evolutionary theory is generally not good at making predictions but it is a useful heuristic. In that sense it is also a useful guide to policy, because it keeps our attention on vital interests such as continuity.

  1. Couldn’t one disagree by arguing that multiculturalism is a new phenomena, which has to develop in the future, and that it will also become productive, democratic and stable!? – Homogeneous societies had also to develop in history, they have not been productive, democratic and stable from the beginning!

Multiculturalism can be too stable. A distinction can be made between Eastern and Western multiculturalism. – – The former includes the majority ethnicity in the multicultural spoils system. The latter is an inverted ethnic hierarchy in which the state licenses minority ethnocentrism but discourages majority ethnocentrism. The result is an alliance of the state and organised minorities against the majority. The emergence of Western multiculturalism was a watershed in political development where the founding nation lost control of the state it had created. Sociologist Eric Kaufmann calls this “asymmetrical multiculturalism”. Western multiculturalism was introduced undemocratically by elites hostile or indifferent to the majority. It has been used to legitimate permanent mass immigration, which works against the demographic interests of the founding nation. If understood in those terms, multiculturalism is a form of permanent top-down revolution. And, as I suggested above, the process usually requires coercion or misinformation to suppress majority resistance, because no people in history has voluntarily given up its majority status in its historic homeland.

  1. Most western countries are multicultural today. But they are also the most economic productive, most democratic and most stable states in the world. Does that show that your statements are wrong?

It is true that most Western societies are not homogeneous but to disprove my analysis would require showing that Western societies became wealthy, democratic and stable as a result of rising diversity. The causal chain is in the reverse direction. European-based societies were among the most homogeneous in the world, even if one allows for slavery in the southern US states. They pioneered liberalism and democracy, science and industry. The latter made them wealthy, which drew in immigrants and thus diversity. It remains to be seen whether civil liberty, democracy, a high standard of living and social stability can long survive rising diversity. The evidence so far is not encouraging. The real test will be how these societies perform under economic hardship. In the West the welfare state has been used to appease the effects of ethnic stratification by redistributing taxes from rich to poor. Rising diversity means that redistribution is occurring more and more across ethnic lines, as in the US, Britain, France and Germany. The danger is that an economic downturn will reduce the state’s ability to appease its multicultural clients. That would tend to increase ethnic stratification and conflict. The same effect would result if the majority voted to reduce welfare.

  1. There have been most successful multicultural societies in history too, like the Roman Empire, the Empire of Persia or the Habsburg Empire for many hundred years! (Of course, one day they vanished – but that happened also to homogeneous societies.)

That is true. The Ottoman Empire is another example. But all these examples were empires, authoritarian hierarchies. The Ottoman and Habsburg empires collapsed under external shock and did not recover. Like the Soviet and Yugoslav empires 70 years later, they broke up into more homogeneous societies. These examples help make my point that diversity makes it more difficult to maintain democracy or equality. Diversity seems to be pushing us towards authoritarian rule, perhaps oligopoly. The sort of precursors we should be considering are democratic, which existed in some part of Europe (Ancient Greece, Republican Rome, England from Magna Carta, Iceland) and all hunter-gatherer societies. But all of these were relatively ethnically homogeneous among those included in the demos.

  1. You say, most wars since 1945 have been civil wars and that ethnically homogeneous nations are less prone to civil war than multicultural societies. Could you give proof!?

Conflict within states – coups, revolts, purges, attempted secession, riots, pogroms, terrorism, massacres, genocide – have been more common than conflict between states. My main source was the late Rudolf J. Rummel, an authority on collective violence and warfare at the University Hawaii. Using data assembled by the anthropologist M. G. Smith, Rummel found that between 1932 and 1982 ethnic diversity accounted for 20 per cent of the variation in frequency of intra-state violence in 166 states. Only democracy explained more variation than diversity. A recent study by Finnish sociologist Tatu Vanhanen used a wider definition of conflict, to include polarisation and political competition to control immigration policy. His comparison of 176 societies finds that ethnic heterogeneity accounts for 60 per cent of the scale of ethnic conflict, i.e. the more diverse a society, the more widespread the conflict.

  1. What is the impact of ethnic diversity on welfare state?

My edited book, Welfare, Ethnicity & Altruism, carries several studies on the subject. Sociologists Stephen Sanderson (USA) and Tatu Vanhanen (Finland) compared welfare around the world and found that ethnic diversity is negatively correlated with welfare rights. Diversity explains 32% of the variation in welfare. In other words, as societies become more diverse, welfare tends to decline. This makes sense when diversity leads to ethnic stratification. Middle class taxpayers are less motivated to vote for generous welfare when the funds go to a different ethnic group.

  1. Could you explain your concept of “Universal Nationalism”! What is it and why could it be an answer to the problem of multiculturalism?

Universal nationalism is meant as an alternative to both globalism and chauvinistic nationalism. The aim is to optimise people’s fitness, by which I mean genetic and cultural continuity, not expansion. This entails retaining national identities, which also allows “public altruism” to develop – the sense of community and belonging that diversity erodes. Two major threats to continuity are globalism‘s destruction of human biocultural diversity through mass migration and hyper-nationalism‘s destruction of individuals and particular countries through inter-state warfare. From the individual citizen’s point of view, the risks are under- and over-investment in the public sphere. That risk is minimised when the individual prioritises family over society and society over humanity, while also investing in globally shared interests such as the environment and inter-state cooperation.

Universal nationalism would be consistent with a genuine multiculturalism that honoured the founding nation instead of making it the enemy. That would democratise multiculturalism by giving the majority a say. Such a reform would tend to reduce mass immigration, which serves the interests of minorities and corporations. Diversity would begin to decline due to assimilation; public altruism would increase. Democratising multiculturalism is an existential goal for Western nations.

  1. When were you a researcher at the Max Planck Institute for Behavioral Physiology? Do you have any experiences with criticism of multiculturalism in Germany? (You may know that it is a highly political matter today! Although Mrs. Merkel said: “Multiculturalism has failed” (politicians also say: “Read my lips, no new tax”) it has become a kind of unofficial state doctrine in Germany.)

I began at the Max Planck Institute in 1991 as a post-doctoral researcher, and finally left 20 years later, in 2011. The most insightful critic of multiculturalism I met in Germany was Irenaeous Eibl-Eibesfeldt, who pointed out that ethno-cultural diversity could undermine communal peace.

Mrs Merkel made one statement criticising multiculturalism but it does not mean very much because she has done nothing to reform multiculturalism in a democratic direction. She is committed to the EU, a commercial and bureaucratic empire that is dissolving national identities and bleeding German taxpayers. She takes seriously Turkey’s application to join the EU which, combined with the Schengen Treaty, would be a demographic disaster for Europe and, in the long run, bad for Turkey.

  1. What is the situation in Australia? Are your criticisms appreciated in politics or by the public or academics? Do you have access to the media and public/academic debate? Or do they stigmatize you and exclude such critics?

My academic subjects are not taught in Australian universities so I make my living in the business world. Australia is suffering from the worst type of multiculturalism, in which an alliance of the left and minority activists excludes the majority of Australians from the policy table. The political culture is ill informed regarding ethnicity, though sophisticated in other areas such as economics. I have managed to publish some articles in a (genuinely) liberal magazine, Quadrant.

  1. Immigration, open borders and multiculturalism could solve most of our problems, many experts say, like world poverty, lack of democracy in undemocratic countries, the western demographic-problem, improving democracy in western countries by ending undemocratic native traditions, etc. etc. So, isn’t it immoral to deny the open-border-concept? Why do you consider the advocates of open borders as “immoral” and misguided?

A policy of open borders is immoral because it would end the national existence of the countries most attractive to immigration. That would be tragic because nationhood carries many benefits, including internal peace, public altruism, greater stability in the face of shocks (such as recession, war and natural disaster), moderating the ambitions of world government, and sustaining human cultural and biological diversity. Strong borders not only make good neighbours, they help maintain local traditions which keep the world a more interesting place. The inevitability of assimilation within states means that the ideal of multiculturalism is only really attainable internationally. Another benefit of nation states is that when they defend their borders they help protect the environment, because the most attractive destinations for immigrants are also the most industrialised and therefore the most polluting economies. Any increase in population burdens the environment. The free movement of people is a corporate interest, not a national one.

Thank you!

Distinct ethnic phenomena – the Boyd circle

Moya, C. and R. Boyd (2015). “Different selection pressures give rise to distinct ethnic phenomena: A functionalist framework with illustrations from the Peruvian Altiplano.” Human Nature 26: 1-27.

Moya and Boyd advance the interesting idea that ethnic behaviour is not a unitary adaptation but consists of several distinct adaptations. Those are: stereotyping, essentialism 1 (belief in the biological transmission of characteristics and stability of identity), essentialism 2 (mutual exclusivity of group identity), intentional ethnic markers, intragroup assortment, and intergroup competition and hostility. By interviewing people from different communities in the Peruvian Altiplano, Moya and Boyd find evidence that these types of ethnic behaviour are not closely correlated. For example, stereotyping by language is weak but stronger by economic function. Even different types of essentialism, the idea that group characteristics are innate, do not covary. Language categories are not considered mutually exclusive but religions generally are.

This is an important addition to ethnicity research, though it raises questions.

The title promised insights into the different selection pressures that shaped how humans think about descent groups (ethnicity is at core a population believed to descend from common ancestors). But it seems that by “selection pressure” Moya and Boyd do not mean biological but cultural selection, because they make scant reference to biological evolution. This will be disappointing to readers who do not accept Boyd and Richerson’s theory of cultural group selection, the idea that cultural innovations can select for genes. They are less happy with the much older Darwinian idea that differences in genes can select for different cultures. That would be an example of essentialism, and like all the other ethnic categories discussed by Boyd and associates, it seems they are all disreputable hangovers from a less enlightened time.

So uncomfortable is the Boyd circle with genetic evolution that the one genetics study cited by Moya and Boyd is from 1997, before the Human Genome Diversity Project database got underway, and before findings based on it began to appear, such as the acceleration of human evolution over the last 10,000 years. Moya and Boyd are careful to distinguish communities from kin groups, as if robust ethnic kinship had not been hypothesised as a basis for intra-group altruism as long ago as 1971 by William Hamilton and confirmed by Henry Harpending in 1979 and again in 2002.[i] The thrust of their work is contained in a book title, by Richerson and Boyd, Not by Genes Alone: How Culture Transformed Human Evolution (2005). A title that would have more accurately described their agenda is: Not By Genes At All. Like Moya and Boyd, they tend to ignore genetically-loaded ethnic markers, especially race, which they label essentialism. Physiognomy, hair form, colour, and personality differences are overlooked .Their citation lists exclude research on gene-based identity, such as by the late J. Philippe Rushton, who pioneered the application of life history theory to ethnicity, and Kevin MacDonald, who applied implicit processing theory to that subject.[ii] Tatu Vanhanen’s ground-breaking cross-cultural comparison of conflict and ethnic heterogeneity do not figure. Even sociobiological studies that link genetic diversity negatively to social cohesion are bypassed.[iii] But they do cite scholars such as Kurzban, Tooby and Cosmides who deny that ethnic kinship is significant.[iv]

Another disappointment with the paper is its apparent American ethnocentrism. The citations largely ignore European researchers who have made large contributions to ethnic studies. The Boyd circle regularly ignores such pioneers of evolutionary approaches as Irenaeus Eibl-Eibesfeldt, Pierre van den Berghe, Tatu Vanhanen, and even the evolutionary psychology of  Ernst Fehr and colleagues in Switzerland. The latter’s groundbreaking work on parochial altruism and morality is surely relevant to the cultural as well as genetic ethnic markers.[v]

The Boyd school produces intricate work that has advanced interesting and useful ideas. However, it is constrained by ideology and parochialism, as well as minority ethnocentrism, which appears to play a gate-keeping role in choice of topics, concepts and even literature review.


[i] Hamilton, W. D. (1971). Selection of selfish and altruistic behavior in some extreme models. Man and beast: Comparative social behavior. J. F. Eisenberg and W. S. Dillon. Washington, D.C., Smithsonian Institute Press: 59-91, Appendix B.

Harpending, H. (1979). “The population genetics of interactions.” American Naturalist 113: 622—630.

Harpending, H. (2002). “Kinship and population subdivision.” Population and Environment 24(2): 141-147.

[ii] Salter, F. K. and H. Harpending (2013). “J. P. Rushton’s theory of ethnic nepotism.” Personality and Individual Differences, Vol. 55: 256-260.

MacDonald, K. B. (2008). “Effortful control, explicit processing and the regulation of human evolved predispositions.” Psychological Review 115(4): 1012-1031.

And see MacDonald’s multi-dimensional theory of ethnicity: MacDonald, K. B. (2001). “An integrative evolutionary perspective on ethnicity.” Politics and the Life Sciences 20(1): 67-79.

[iii] E.g. Vanhanen, T. (2012). Ethnic conflicts: Their biological roots in ethnic nepotism. London, Ulster Institute for Social Research.

Salter, F. K. (2002). “Estimating ethnic genetic interests: Is it adaptive to resist replacement migration?” Population and Environment 24(2): 111-140.

[iv] Kurzban, R., J. Tooby and L. Cosmides (2001). “Can race be erased? Coalitional computation and social categorization.” Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 98: 15387-15392.

[v] Bernhard, H., U. Fischbacher and E. Fehr (2006). “Parochial altruism in humans.” Nature 442: 912-915.


Wages of blackness

This week the Australian media reported the story of a woman who resigned from the prestigious U.S. black activist organisation, the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), when it was revealed that her claim to be of African American descent was false. Rachel Dolezal, 37, resigned as president of the Spokane branch of the NAACP. Former colleagues denounced Dolezal’s deception.

Some conservatives argue that Dolezal committed a “victimhood swindle” facilitated by the political left changing its civil rights agenda in the 1970s to save alleged victims of discrimination.[i] This is partly true but overlooks another important strategy adopted by the cosmopolitan left, which involved allying with ethnic minorities against white majorities to install multiculturalism and the institutional edifice erected to that end.

Dolezal’s career is a case of the “wages of blackness”, multiple benefits flowing from her (claimed) racial identity. The case contradicts the mainstream academic theory that the “wages of whiteness” – benefiting from having a white identity – enjoy a unique position in the U.S. and other white-majority countries, that non-white ethnic groups’ ethnocentrism pays no dividends. Posted at the end of this comment is a previous discussion of this ethnocentric academic ideology, which has spread to Australian universities.

Dolezal’s claim to be partly African-American by descent brought numerous benefits. She enrolled at the historically black Howard University claiming to be African American, where she received a full scholarship. She then built her career as an activist for the black community.[ii] Dolezal was hired as a weekly columnist for a Spokane newspaper. She also served as a mediator for the city’s police force.

The wages-of-whiteness narrative is true as far as it goes because people can benefit from passing for white. However, unlike the Dolezal case the benefits do not come from a racial-activist system. All ethnic groups show patterns of informal discrimination, as evidenced by people clustering by ethnicity in choice of friends, business partners and spouses. The resulting boundaries are real but blurred. This is “implicit” ethnicity, argues evolutionary psychologist Kevin MacDonald. This contrasts with “explicit” ethnicity in which a person deliberately pursues goals based on a conscious ethnic identity, generating group boundaries that are sharper, often due to formal processes.

So someone who passes for white, consciously or not, can gain greater entrance to white society, with benefits accruing from implicit discrimination. Dolezal’s wages were much greater because she profited from explicit ethnicity. By passing for black she bypassed multiple racial barriers set up by the Black Ethnic Infrastructure to benefit black people. This difference is a normal part of multiculturalism. Minorities are licensed by the multicultural state and by supportive elites in the media and universities to organise for ethnic interests, which is to say explicitly discriminate. But whites are not permitted to do the same. Attempts to do so are punished by attacks on their reputation and often their jobs by the media and by powerful leftist and minority-activist bodies that proliferate in the U.S. and other Western societies – the Southern Poverty Law Center, the NAACP, the ADL, and many others, in addition to taxpayer-funded activist academics. That is the sharp edge of multiculturalism, where the subordination of white people becomes all too obvious.

Implicit whiteness pays casual wages, but the big pay offs come from explicit ethnicity, monopolised by the left on behalf of minorities.

(The following paragraphs are quoted from Salter, F. K. (2014). The war against human nature in Australia’s political culture: Collected essays. Sydney, Kindle, originally published in Quadrant magazine.[iii])

“An extreme example of the politicisation of the field of ethnic studies is the school of “whiteness studies”. This began with a Marxist thesis developed in the well-known book The Wages of Whiteness (1999) by American historian David Roediger. The thesis is that belonging to the white race brings unearned social and economic advantages. This is perhaps the theoretical basis for the claim that Anglo Australians are privileged. Australia has its own academic whiteness studies association, The Australian Critical Race and Whiteness Studies Association (ACRAWSA),[iv] whose goal is to “[c]ritically investigate and challenge racial privilege and the construction and maintenance of race and whiteness . . .”. A political agenda is evident in the failure to generalise the thesis. Do not members of other ethnicities and races benefit from group membership? Are there not wages of blackness or of Chineseness? Why are there only benefits for whites and disadvantages for non-whites? The school does not attempt to assess the costs of whiteness, such as affirmative action, at a time when the white man’s burden weighs heavily upon him. White societies around the world are in steep demographic and economic decline, a fact not easy to reconcile with the unchanging white hegemony alleged in whiteness studies. The sole emphasis on white privilege, in a diverse world in which that race is in headlong retreat, is difficult to distinguish from racial animus.

“Another analytical flaw is the school’s dogma that race is a social construct, that it has no objective existence. The notion is found throughout the social sciences and humanities. Also absent from whiteness studies is the concept of ethnic interests, a recurring deficiency of contemporary ethnic studies.”



[i] Janet Albrechtsen, “Victimhood has become the new black”, The Australian, 17 June 2015, p. 12.

[ii] “‘I definitely am not white,’ says Dolezal”, AFP. The Australian, 18 June 2015, p. 11.

“Activist who faked being black quits top US civil rights group”, AP. The Australian, 17 June 2015, p. 10.

[iii] Salter, F. K. (2012). “The war against human nature III-2: Australia and the national question, part II: Race and the nation in the universities.” Quadrant 56(11 (491)): 36-44.

[iv] ACRAWSA’s website is at /

Greg Sheridan’s hostility to Anglo Australia: Update, 18 May 2015

This is an update of a previous post on senior Murdoch journalist Greg Sheridan, part of an inquiry into elite hostility towards Anglo and white Australia.

Sheridan’s writings over the last few months confirm his hostility towards Anglo Australia. Such views are normal in the mainstream media but Sheridan is perceived to be a rare conservative voice in the mainstream media, a staunch defender of the US alliance, border protection, UN scepticism,[i] Catholic values[ii] and a critic of pretentious intellectual fashions. Why is this conservatism suspended in relation to ethnicity? Why is it that Sheridan takes seriously views propounded by the far left during his student days? In the previous post I wondered whether he wished total demographic transformation on other nations apart from the historic Australian one. Some cases will be quoted below but first let us review recent confirmation of Sheridan’s hostility towards Anglo Australia.

In the Weekend Australian (16-17 May, 2015) Sheridan explains why he thinks Australia’s record on immigration and refugee issues has been “exemplary”.

“We run just about the largest per capita immigration program in the world and it is completely racially non-discriminatory. In the past 35 years, we have completely remade ourselves ethnically, and we have done so without any serious disturbances. We also run, per capita, one of the largest permanent refugee resettlement programs in the world.”[iii]

These are presented as independent benefits: (1) a permanent and very high level of immigration; (2) which is non-discriminatory by ethnicity; (3) resulting in the complete ethnic transformation of Australia; (4) but with little ethnic conflict (so far); and (5) acceptance of large numbers of refugees, again rare in the world.

Everyone can agree with number four, but the remainder are compatible with a thorough-going cosmopolitan that will leave many conservatives and patriots cold, an internationalism that renounces ethnic and national identities. Rejection of ethnic self defence is a recurring theme in Sheridan’s writings, showing a significant level of consistency. For example, when once-prime minister Malcolm Fraser died in March 2015, Sheridan criticised him for hesitating before accepting large numbers of refugees from Vietnam following the fall of Saigon in 1975.[iv] Sheridan and the Murdoch media in general have always maintained that refugees as well as immigrants should never be selected on the basis of ethnic compatibility. Likewise, cosmopolitanism is implied in Sheridan’s criticism of Australia’s formative British connection, the decline of which is part of the cultural transformation he supports. Despite admiring Tony Abbott, Sheridan savaged the Prime Minister’s decision to award Prince Philip with a knighthood. In support of this criticism, Sheridan ridiculed Australians who accept “British honours”, and repudiated what he saw as Abbott’s attempt to “shape our culture”, presumably because this would tend to roll back progressive “complete ethnic transformation”. This was a replay of Sheridan’s May 1989 criticism of the recently deposed Opposition leader, John Howard, for suggesting that during a recession Asian immigration be reduced in the interests of social cohesion.[v] The criticism was couched in cosmopolitan tones, assuming that ethnocentrism is inherently inhuman and unreasonable.

Sheridan has been presenting himself as a cosmopolitan citizen of the world for many years. In 2005, in discussing immigration to Europe from North Africa and the Middle East, he declared: “It doesn’t matter how many Muslims live in Europe if there is general peace and reasonable civic harmony. And nobody should ever be judged negatively because of their membership of a social group, race or religion.”[vi] This is the dogma applied originally by the radical left to oppose colonialism, white “racism” and indeed any national boundaries. The anti-discrimination mantra was then used as moralistic cover by minority activists. These two agendas were welded together to construct the ideological vehicle of multiculturalism. In an age of mass global transport, applying the dogma leads, inevitably, to “complete ethnic transformation”. Just a decade later Sheridan continues to declare that any number of immigrants does not matter, at least in the case of Australia, even if the result is the “cultural genocide” of the receiving nation.

Cosmopolitanism is also suggested in Sheridan’s criticism of nationalism in the recent British general elections.[vii] He praises loyalty to the state in no uncertain terms, as “honest, decent patriotism” on the part of citizens towards their country, but criticises the Scottish nationalism of the Scottish Nationalist Party that split the Labour vote and the “nutty fringe” nationalism of UKIP, which he sees as English nationalism.

Thus far, consistency of cosmopolitan principle can, with a little wishful thinking, be inferred in Sheridan’s columns. But one need not read much further to find a remarkable contrast between his treatment of Western and non-Western ethnicity. In the same article in which he praises Australia’s ethnic transformation due to non-discriminatory immigration, he describes India’s preference for refugees who are Hindus like themselves. At the same time that country is being tough on Muslim illegal immigrants, trying to force them to return to home.[viii] This observation is made without criticism, sarcasm or irony. India’s behaviour is presented matter-of-factly, as it should be given how normal it is throughout the non-Western world and in the West prior to the 1960s. In another article in the same issue of The Weekend Australian[ix] Sheridan not only accepts traditional ethnic selectivity in choosing immigrants and even refugees, but praises the cultural continuity this makes possible, “stretching back across the centuries”. He offers similar remarks about China, also in a matter-of-fact way. But China’s “cultural continuity and the distinctiveness of the way things are done” there would not last forever if the country opened its borders the way Australia has done. Since the last years of the Howard government Australia has been admitting the equivalent of about one percent of its population every year, the equivalent of China admitting over 13 million immigrants annually. If India emulated Australia its intake would be over 12 million.

A genuine cosmopolitan would believe that Hindus and Han could become minorities in their own countries without losing anything precious, so long as the transformation was peaceful. Sheridan’s failure to meet this perverse standard speaks well of his humanity and common sense, at least in relation to India and China. He has also long respected Israel’s wish to remain a Jewish state, paying respectful attention to demography.[x] Sheridan sees the obvious truth that a nation that allows itself to become a minority in its own territory must undergo loss of identity and autonomy. When it is a democracy, as is Israel and Australia, ethnic swamping will lead inevitably to loss of control over the state as well. Sheridan refers to the threatened “extinction of the Jewish state” and “destruction by the demographic time bomb”.

The importance of remaining in a clear majority is also acknowledged by Sheridan in the case of Northern Ireland. “[T]he Unionists appear to be losing the peace. For a start, the Protestants have lost their majority.”[xi] This is due to the higher Catholic birth rate. The loss of numbers means loss of control of councils, which are removing British symbols. Young Protestants are feeling out of place and beginning to avoid schools and universities in Northern Ireland. The writing is on the wall for Unionist Northern Ireland, Sheridan explains, and its all due to demographic destiny.

Sheridan’s empathy (for non-Anglo countries) is a moral, humane position consistent with moderate politics. A favourable comparison can be made with the centrist politician Malcolm Turnbull, now federal minister for communications. In 2003, before entering parliament, Turnbull, an Anglo Australian, expressed alarm at the prospect of low birth rates leading to national decline.[xii] His concern was not limited to his own nation. “[I]f current birth rates continue, in 100 years the descendants of the current inhabitants of Italy, Spain and Greece will number about 23% of their present day forebears.” (p. 1) “Many great cultures, Italy, Spain, Greece, Japan, Russia (to name but five) could become functionally extinct within a century.” (p. 7) Immigration is not a fix for low birth rates, Turnbull argued, because of the sheer scale needed: “Italy, for example, would need to absorb 2 million immigrants every five years if it wanted to maintain its current population size without increasing fertility.” (p. 25) Turnbull might have added that replacement by ethnically distinct immigrants is the same–genetically and culturally to a significant extent–as extinction. The solution? Turnbull declared the right to procreate to be “the most basic human right” and that it should be afforded to citizens. He saw the decline of any people or culture as tragic. Unlike Sheridan, he included Australia and the West in his sympathies.

Further evidence of Sheridan’s particularism is easy to find. “India is changing Australia, and for the better . . . Of Australia’s population of 24 million people, about a half million have an Indian background. There are 46,000 Indian students in Australia . . .” Would India or China be changed for the better by wholesale ethnic replacement? The statement is standard multicultural chauvinism, not what one expects from a conservative.

Why is immigration restriction in the interests of ethnic or cultural continuity good for India and China and Israel but not for Australia? It cannot be a matter of cosmopolitanism because Sheridan shows strong identification with Ireland.[xiii] He is a man of “proud Irish extraction[xiv], indicating an ethnic sentiment surely not limited to fondness for Hibernian green fields or architecture or even Catholicism. Furthermore, he claims to be a staunch supporter of “Western civilisation”,[xv] especially the Christian faith that he believes provides the West’s “moral capital”. He does not explain how any civilisation can survive “complete ethnic transformation” which must reduce the standing of the original religion.

The case of Greg Sheridan raises the possibility that Australia’s hostile elite culture is not motivated solely by cosmopolitanism. There is an element of historical grudge nurtured by some citizens of Irish-Catholic descent towards Anglo Australians because they are seen as avatars of English overlords from the late Medieval period. Sheridan himself has referred more than once to “800 years of British persecution” of Ireland, ethnic history “taught at my father’s knee” as an Irish Australian.[xvi] In a 1988 article explaining why he supported Australia becoming a republic, Sheridan recalled that he was raised to have bitter thoughts about England and Australia’s connection to Britain.[xvii] The heroes of his youth were Irish (Catholic) nationalists. “I lived in the dying days of the old Irish-Catholic ghetto–a fiercely partisan, close-knit place.” “Therefore I had no instinctive or emotional sympathy for England.” Since then he had come to appreciate English literature and institutions. But his ancestral voices were Irish. “I was a republican kid . . . so I refused point-blank during my school years ever to stand for God Save the Queen or in any other way to acknowledge English sovereignty over Australia.” This extraordinary bravery indicates that the young Sheridan was a passionate tribal warrior. He would carry that passion through his life, his sectarian resentment ever on a hair trigger. “I wish those Australians with English backgrounds who tell immigrants and their children not to have dual loyalties . . . would apply this advice to themselves.” In another article in the late 1980s Sheridan again displayed ethnic intolerance, criticising the English for being “the only group of immigrants which has ever shown a significant degree of divided loyalty, and whose divided loyalty has actually done harm to Australia.”[xviii] The same article urges Australia to embrace multiculturalism, the argument predicated on a sustained attack on the Anglo identity of the majority population. In 2011 Sheridan was to withdraw his praise for multiculturalism, though only in the case of Muslims, who he accused of turning his Sydney suburb into an unfriendly place.[xix]

Greg Sheridan’s celebration of the cultural genocide he sees being committed against Anglo Australia using the instrument of mass non-European immigration indicates that he treats Australian Anglo identity as an extension of the Empire that dominated his ethnic homeland, Ireland. He has failed to grasp that he is part of the larger Australian Anglo culture.

Sheridan’s long destructive campaign against Anglo Australia is another example of the costs imposed by diversity, sometimes among kindred ethnic groups. It also punches a hole in the cosmopolitan theory of how multiculturalism arose.[xx] Was it with insincerity that ethnic activists accused Anglos of discrimination and demanded tolerance or was it self deception? Sheridan’s writings indicate that at least some of those demands, perhaps many, came from individuals who felt ethnic motivation more intensely, both positive and negative, than most Anglos. The Sheridan case illustrates how “subaltern ethnics” are often far more mobilised ethnically than the majority, which is relatively relaxed emotionally secure. It fits the view that in this instance anti-racism really is a form of anti-whiteness. It supports the view that multiculturalism is an inverted ethnic hierarchy in which a coalition of hyper-mobilised minorities deploying cosmopolitan rhetoric work to bring down a relatively tolerant and leaderless majority.[xxi]

All of which raises the question of scale: how much of the coldness shown by Australia’s leadership towards the historic nation is due to bitter Old World tribal rivalries being pursued in the New World?


[i] Greg Sheridan. “U.N. convention turns Australia into a magnet for asylum-seekers”, The Australian, 20 June 2013. “Sadly, like most things associated with the UN, it has grown into a sort of grotesque parody of itself, with vast unintended consequences.”

[ii] Greg Sheridan. “The forum”. The Weekend Australian, 13-14 April 2013, Lifelines, p. 2. “It strikes me as quite wicked to deprive Catholic children of any encounter with the magnificent musical tradition of their church.”

[iii] Greg Sheridan. “Boatpeople crisis a global phenomenon”, The Weekend Australian, 16-17 May 2015, p. 17.

[iv] Greg Sheridan. “Fraser was no saint for Vietnamese refugees”, The Australian, 26 March 2015.

[v] Greg Sheridan. “Howard’s fatally flawed judgment”, The Weekend Australian, 13-14 May, 1989, p. 40.

[vi] Greg Sheridan. “Europe’s big challenge”, The Australian, 21 July 2005.

[vii] Greg Sheridan. “Pity centrists, beware the nationalists and praise Australia’s good friend”, The Australian, 14 May 2015.

[viii] Greg Sheridan. “Boatpeople crisis a global phenomenon”, op cit.

[ix] Greg Sheridan. “A geeks’ paradise in Mysore is among the most magnificent temples of a forward-looking India”, The Weekend Australian, 16-17 May 2015, p. 24.

[x] Greg Sheridan. “Israel: a simple case of an immensely comple context”, The Weekend Australian, 7-8 January 1989.

[xi] Greg Sheridan. “Northern Ireland’s peaceful progress cannot be taken for granted”, The Australian, 3 April 2014, p. 12.

[xii] Malcolm Turnbull (2003). “It’s the birth rate, stupid! Facing up to fertility.” Speech to the National Population Summit, Adelaide, 21 November.

[xiii] See Kaufmann, E. (2004). The rise and fall of Anglo-America. Cambridge, MA, Harvard University Press.

[xiv] Greg Sheridan. “If only Enda was having a lend”, The Australian, 19 March 2015, p. 2.

[xv] Greg Sheridan. “Western civilisation at stake amid growing threats”. The Australian, 12 March 2015.

[xvi] Greg Sheridan. “A brave move for Scotland”, The Weekend Australian, 6-7 September. 2014.

[xvii] Greg Sheridan. “Why Australia must forget foreign symbols”, The Weekend Australian, 30-31 January 1988.

[xviii] Greg Sheridan. “Cutting constitutional ties to Britain a good thing indeed”, The Weekend Australian, 19-20 August 1989.

[xix] Greg Sheridan. “How I lost my faith in multiculturalism”, The Australian, 2 April 2011.

[xx] Kaufmann, E. (2004). The rise and fall of Anglo-America. Op cit.

[xxi] Salter, F. K. (2012). “The war against human nature III-2: Australia and the national question, part II: Race and the nation in the universities.” Quadrant 56(11 (491)): 36-44.


Hostile Western elites: Rupert Murdoch

This entry continues the series of reports identifying elite antagonism towards Anglo Australia.

Rupert Murdoch is one of the world’s most influential media barons. He owns about 30 percent of News Corporation, a conglomerate that controls 70 per cent of Australia’s print media including the biggest-selling newspapers in many cities. The Daily Telegraph in Sydney, the Herald Sun in Melbourne, and the Courier Mail in Brisbane are all Murdoch newspapers, as is the national daily, The Australian, begun in 1964. News Corp also owns The Times of London, The Wall Street Journal of New York, and many other influential newspapers.

Murdoch is also highly political, throwing his newspapers’ weight behind favoured candidates and governments and attacking those he does not favour. He supported the election of the Whitlam government in 1972 but opposed it in 1975. At present his newspapers generally support the ruling Liberal-National Coalition and oppose the Labor Party opposition, and are especially critical of the Greens on the left of the political spectrum. Despite his beginnings as a young radical who attracted the nickname “Red Rupert” at Oxford, Murdoch has long been seen as a bulwark of the corporate right here and overseas.

There is truth to that perception. Murdoch’s publications introduce some diversity of opinion to the otherwise left-dominated mainstream media. News Corporation is seen as a line of defence by conservatives and patriots against a generally hegemonic cultural Marxism that holds sway in the media and the education system. As Rupert Murdoch and his chief journalists have influenced the content of Australia’s alternate narrative over the last half century, it is all the more important to understand their stance on ethnic affairs.

Conveniently for that purpose, The Australian of 25th April 2015―the centenary of the Anzac landings at Gallipoli in Turkey―carried an interview of Murdoch reported by Paul Kelly, the newspaper’s most senior journalist and now “editor-at-large” (“Murdoch: Our Pride in Link to Gallipoli”, pages 1, 6). The interview quotes Murdoch’s views concerning the Gallipoli battle of 1915, in which his father, Keith, was involved as a correspondent. Murdoch agrees with his father’s harsh criticism of “British military ineptitude” linked to criticism of the generals’ upper class origins. The criticism “has shaped Rupert Murdoch’s own thinking for much of his life”. The views reflect typical anti-English stereotypes. For example, that the British military leaders were “too remote” and “out of touch” because of their upper class origins; that Gallipoli was a “British offensive” in which Australians made extraordinary sacrifices; that the “ghastly bungling” was to be expected from “such a General Staff as the British Army possesses” due to its “conceit and complacency”; that the Australians were better fighters than the British “toy soldiers” at Suvla Bay; that Winston Churchill made a disastrous mistake in conceiving the invasion. Nursed grievance is indicated by Murdoch’s remark that the British establishment never forgave his father for his criticism of the Gallipoli campaign. “I don’t believe the British establishment ever forgave my father for what he did.”

These views of British ineptitude in the Great War are deeply engrained in Australian culture and have helped facilitate republican and anti-Anglo sentiment. They are reflected in Peter Weir’s 1981 film Gallipoli, which adopted the same cartoonish anti-English stereotypes. They have contributed some of the chauvinism of Australian nationalism. Keith Murdoch’s nationalism was defined against the British, perhaps because Australia had been part of the British Empire and perceived by many to be inferior in status to the metropolitan power. After all, Britain had created the Australian colonies and nurtured their rise to independence and federation. As the mother country, Britain was at that time the closest culture to Australia, so close that Australia, with English Canada and New Zealand, formed part of an extended Anglo culture with intimate ties of history, family, race and economy.

However understandable Murdoch senior’s criticisms (and chauvinism) they were absurd because they lacked any comparative dimension. Keith Murdoch can be forgiven his lack of overview writing in 1915 but by 1918 it was obvious that the Gallipoli campaign fitted a pattern of conflict that was common to every front of that conflict and to armies of every nationality. A brief initial period of manoeuvre soon gave way to trench warfare. Military theorists attribute this to technical more than doctrinal weakness. The advent of machine guns and modern artillery inhibited tactical mobility because armour had not been developed. When tanks were introduced the situation began to change. Every European army was led by generals recruited from the upper classes, and they all failed to sustain mobility in the face of modern weapons. The bitter losses of Gallipoli were not caused by distinctively British characteristics, and the British “toy soldiers” fought and died as bravely as their Australian cousins.

Rupert Murdoch, a business genius with access to the most sophisticated advice, has retained a prejudicial view of the English relationship to Australia.

Paul Kelly reports Murdoch and his father uncritically, apart from an undirected qualification that Keith Murdoch’s views contained exaggeration and inaccuracy. In another article in the same issue (“Validation of a Nation”), Kelly states that colonial troops died at Gallipoli in a “forlorn British undertaking”. Again the British leaders are the perpetrators, Australians the victims. This is consistent with Kelly’s views on immigration and symbolic ties to Britain. He is a Murdoch appointee. Kelly entered the Canberra Press Gallery in 1971, reporting on federal parliament, and was appointed chief political correspondent for The Australian in 1974-5. He worked for Fairfax newspapers from 1976 to 1984 before returning to the Murdoch fold in 1985. He is one of the most influential of Australian journalists.

Murdoch’s critical view of the British may have influenced his cosmopolitan views on immigration. He has never expressed concern for Australia’s core Anglo or European identity and generally supports greater immigration as a means of boosting the economy. During his visit to Australia to celebrate The Australian’s 50th anniversary in 2014, he called for Australia to “throw open” its doors to immigrants.[i] This was at a time when the Australian intake was among the highest in the OECD, at about one percent of its population per annum. On a per capita basis this was equivalent to triple the U.S.’s one million legal immigrants per year. Australia’s massive intake was contributing to what a leading journalist with The Australian newspaper described as the “benign cultural genocide” of Anglo Australia. Likewise in the same year Murdoch praised Britain’s open immigration policy for boosting its economy, in a year when the country was experiencing an unprecedented influx of Polish immigrants. Murdoch also believes that the United States should legalise the ten million uneducated illegal immigrants, ostensibly as a means of growing its economy. The irrationality and destructiveness of these views, even from a cosmopolitan, neo-liberal perspective, is incompatible with warmth for Australia or the West. It indicates indifference at best.

Moreover, these views are expressed by the editorial policies of many Murdoch publications, conditioned by local business conditions. Has Rupert Murdoch been antagonistic towards Western ethnicity or has his attitude been shaped by business pressures? Is it hostility to a nation or culture to relegate its interests in pursuit of profit? Is corporate capitalism inherently hostile to the independence and continuity of all national identities or have Australia and the West been singled out? These are large questions that need to be answered before the motivation underlying Rupert Murdoch’s apparent betrayal of his people can be definitively categorised.

[i] “Throw open our doors to those who cherish our values: Murdoch”, The Australian, 16 July 2014, p. 1.

Nation news, 23 April 2015

Method note. The newspaper was not delivered on 21 or 22 April due to heavy storms.

So far I’ve only been recording Gallipoli and WWI stories when they mention ethnicity, and therefore leaving most stories unrecorded because they do not discuss Australian soldiers’ generally British identification. Ethnicity is only mentioned with regard to minority identity, mainly Aborigines. The stories tell about discrimination during recruitment and post-war treatment. Considerable emphasis has been put on these themes, with an accommodating media being fed by the Aboriginal industry. The contrast with the overwhelmingly Anglo diggers could not be stronger. Their identification with Anglo Australia and with the Empire is not recorded. This despite the Australian Army being a volunteer force whose recruitment was driven by patriotism in addition to lust for adventure. Patriotism at that time had strong ethnic and Empire-loyalist strands. When commentators declare that Gallipoli consecrated the Australian nation, they are being selective and sometimes creative about what actually motivated the soldiers. They are applying their own interpretation when they celebrate Gallipoli for affirming creedal nationalism and multiculturalism, doctrines that underpin what has been described as the cultural genocide of Anglo Australia through mass immigration. Anzacs are held to have fought for freedom and mateship. Small-group bonding is the strongest cohesive force in combat troops, but freedom? No evidence is presented of abstract concept of freedom motivated any Australian soldier. The freedom for which they fought was that of their nation and the British Empire. To accurately record Anzacs’ motivations should redouble our sense of tragedy because Anzacs did not fight and die for the extirpation of their nation as they conceived it. No wonder multiculturalist commentators criticise Anzac Day for being too Anglo and too white.

Despite the above, the omission of most Gallipoli stories has been an error because the event is an expression of Anglo-Australian identity, however the media and education system now represent it. The event forms the heart of the nation’s public ritual life. From now on Anzac stories will be recorded along with their orientation – creedal or ethnic.

The late Peter Walsh on Australia’s hostile elite

Nick Cater has recorded some views of Peter Walsh, Australian Finance Minister in the 1980s, who died in April 2015 aged 80. Walsh served in the Hawke and Keating cabinets but was suspicious of their embrace of multiculturalism (“Prescient warnings of a minister of common sense”, The Australian, 14 April 2015).

In his memoirs, Confessions of a Failed Finance Minister (1995), Walsh defended Australia’s Anglo-Celtic culture against those attacking it. The intensity of those attacks are indicated by Walsh’s guess at the motives of the critics: “What psychotic disorder, what deep-seated se1f-loathing, causes people who are the beneficiaries of that heritage to constantly vilify and denigrate it?” (Cater did not provide the source for this quote.)

Cater points out that Walsh was not tertiary educated, leaving school at age 10. Walsh believed that his Labor Party had been captured by a tertiary-educated elite, an “authoritarian group which regards itself as Left progressive” and served the “bourgeois Left and middle-class trendoids in the gentrified suburbs of Sydney and Melbourne”. In particular he was critical of the “amoral” political tactics of his colleague Graham Richardson, who he thought sought to hold power for its own sake, not advance particular policies.

Walsh also criticised Paul Keating, prime minister from 1991 to 1996, for pandering to vocal minorities which had good media connections, including Aboriginal and other ethnic activists. Keating thought that he could retain power by pleasing minorities. He judged Keating to be gullible when he accepted ethnic activists as leaders of their communities. And he objected to the Keating government’s stiffening of the Racial Discrimination Act with section 18c which outlawed causing offence to ethnic or racial groups.

Walsh’s views on immigration are not quoted. But if he resented vilification and denigration of Australia’s core identity, he certainly would have rejected any attempt to subject Anglo Australia to cultural genocide using replacement-level immigration, as described by senior journalist Greg Sheridan.

Nation News, 17 April 2015

Method note. The content analysis is still taking too long, about two hours on this occasion. One change in today’s coverage is putting the summary in tabular form, to ease comparisons. At the same time I’ve tried to include every report of a nation or ethnic group.

The Australian newspaper. Section 1, of 18 pages. 8 x 51 = 408 column centimetres/page.

Page 1

Rick Morton. “Without full Gonski, schools will close, Catholics say.” 5.5 x 5 cols. = 27.5 col cms, + 40 on p. 6 = total of 67.5 col cms. The National Catholi Educational Commission warned that some regional Catholic schools would be forced to close unless the federal government implemented the reforms recommended by the Gonski inquiry.

Page 4

Amos Aikman, Northern Correspondent. “Dutton denies ‘pregnant protest’.” 3 x 13 = 39 col cms. Asylum-seeker advocates allege that five pregnant women and two men staged a protest on the roof of the Darwin Wickham Point immigration detention centre.

Page 5

Sarah Elks. “Official ‘hid priest friend’s rapes’.” 8.5 x 6 cols = 51 col cms. A Rockhampton Catholic orphanage official allegedly failed to report rapes of children by a priest.

Michaela Boland. “Hermitage show hurts Ukraine.” 2 x 13 = 26 cm cols. The Ukrainian ambassador to Australia, supported by the chairman of the Australian Federation of Ukrainian Organisations, Stefan Romaniw, complained to the federal government about the National Gallery of Victoria for hosting a display of artworks from the Hermitage in Russia, so soon after the downing of flight MH17 in July 2014 by Russian-backed militias.

Page 7

Jacquelin Magnay. “Howard enjoys select company.” 13 cm x 6 = 78 col cms, mostly a photo. John Howard is hosted at a select meeting of members of the Order of Merit by the Queen at Windsor Castle, England.

Page 8

Jamie Walker, Middle East Correspondent. “Iran the new Nazis: Netanyahu.” 7 x 26 = 182 col. cms, of which 122 were photos. “Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has politicised Holocaust remembrance services in Jerusalem by comparing Islamic Iran to Nazi Germany.”

AFP. “Bibi fails to woo Right to form ruling coalition.” 2 x 13 = 26 col cms. Israeli politics.

AFP. “Girl who defied the German machine three times.” 5 x 13 = 65 col cms including 12 col cm photo. Story of a Holocaust survivor now living in Israel on the 70th anniversary of the liberation fo the camps at the end of WWII.

Matthew Campbell. “Ageing campaigners fear rise of anti-Semitism threatens a return to the Holocaust.” 8 x 10 = 80 col cms, with small photo of Jean-Marie Le Pen. Nazi hunter Serge Klarsfeld and his wife warn against a new wave of anti-Semitism in Europe. Then mention the recent Islamist attacks but mainly far right parties. They helped ban a performance by comedian Dieudonne who mocks Jews and cautioned about Jean-Marie Le Pen’s belittling of the Holocaust and praise for the Vichy government of WWII.

Asa Fitch and Aresu Eqbali, The Wall Street Journal. 41 col cms. “Congress must quit its prying: Rouhani.” The Iranian President criticised the US Congress for interfering in US-Iranian negotiations over nuclear sanctions.

Page 9

AFP. “Turkey rebuffs MEPs on Armenia.” 28 col cms. The Turkish government rejected a call by the European Parliament to reconcile with Armenians for the 1915 massacres.

AFP. “Vatican plans to move on abuse responsibility.” 2 x 13 = 26 col cms.

Page 10

Catherine Philp from Beirut. “Anbar calls for US help as Islamists circle Ramadi.” 5 x 25.5 = 127.5 col cms, with 64 cc photo. Islamic State advances in Iraq.

AFP. “Dawn FARC attack kills 10 soldiers.” 3 x 12 cc. Guerilla activity in Columbia.

Page 11

Jamie Walker, Middle East Correspondent. “Stories that shouldn’t die.” 8 x 41.5 = 342 cc., with photos 196 cc. Commemoration of the 70th anniversary of camp liberation, ending the Holocaust.

Page 12

Graham Richardson. “Obama a failure on world stage.” 2 x 40 = 80 cc. Criticised US President Obama’s Middle East policy, agreeing with Greg Sheridan regarding Obama’s deal with the Iranians over nuclear weapons.

Page 14

Wesley Enoch. “The dark side of the Anzac legend.” 25 x 6 = 150 cc, with photo 64 cc. Indigenous soldiers have not received enough recognition for service in WWI. Unlike white returned soldiers, indigenous were not granted land due to state legislation. Some names were omitted from war memorials, from RSL membership and from ANZAC marches.


Ethnocentrism scores, i.e. articles reporting events from or against a particular perspective.

Identity From Against
Catholic 67.5 77
Asylum seekers 39
Russia 26
Ukraine 26
Britain 78
Israel + Jews 695
Iran 41
Armenia 28
Turkey 28
Islamists (Islamic State) 127
Columbia 36
Barack Obama 80
Indigenous Australians 150

Nation News: Thursday 2 April 2015

Content in The Australian for Thursday 2nd April 2015 prompted consideration of method. How to treat articles that mention ethnicity but mostly with other issues? A front page about and large photograph of newly appointed NSW Treasurer, Gladys Berejiklian, discussed her career. The article continued on page 4 where it mentioned Berejiklian’s Armenian heritage. A different methodological problem is presented by Greg Sheridan’s opinion piece about President Barack Obama’s foreign policy. The striking thing about Sheridan’s article is omission of ethnic factors shaping Obama’s foreign policy. It might be argued that the article should not be tallied because it has no ethnic content. But omissions such as this have likely affected Australian public culture. I shall be taking the approach of including Sheridan’s article as a case of the dog that did not bark, an absence of words that speaks volumes about the mainstream media.

A way to treat this would be to note the mention but not include the article in the count of column inches or go into other content analysis.

Page 1

Mark Coulton, NSW Political Correspondent. “Berejiklian’s journey: how a banker found herself running a state budget.” And page 4. News. On p. 4 mentions GB’s Armenian descent.

Paige Taylor. “Locals powerless to deal with killer dogs.” News. And page 2. The article begins by noting the Aboriginal identity of an 18 year old woman mauled to death by dogs in the Kimberley.

Page 2

Sarah Elks. “Nothing Eva didn’t know, but native title justice still a joy.” News. 51.5 col. cms. including photo 13 col. cms. Federal Court justice John Dowsett found in favour of an application for native title by the Gangalidda and Garawa elders of territory on the Gulf of Carpentaria. Elder Eva Gilbert was present at the announcement.  It was the 100th finding of native title by the Queensland branch of the Federal Court.

Page 5

Marie Hogg. “Another step in Ahwang’s cultural journey.” News. 110 col. cms. including 178 col. cm. photo. Reports the graduation ceremony of the NAISDA indigenous dance academy near Gosford. The story features Hans Ahwang, a Torres Strait Islander, one of six graduating. An alumnus of the academy, Stephen Page, now artistic director of the Bangarra Dance Theatre, stated that indigenous Australians had much diversity and history that needed to be kept alive in the modern era. That was the mission of the academy, making it a “cultural university” for indigenous Australians. It allowed students to “choose indigenous culture as a career”. Another aim was to culturally strengthen indigenous communities by giving them knowledge from the academy. Ahwang said that he wanted to give back to his people first, to “take care of our culture”. This example of taxpayer-funded ethnic activism was not identified as such in the report

Page 12

Peter Baldwin. “Where the right to speak is howled down.” Opinion. 190 col. cms. including 34 col. cm. cartoon. Baldwin was minister for higher education, 1990-93, in the Hawke-Keating government. Baldwin criticises anti-Israel and anti-Semitic mob rule at Sydney University, based on a growing affinity between the far left and Islamists. Though touching on the case of Professor Barry Spurr who was suspended for alleged sexist and racist private e-mails, most of Baldwin’s comment defends Israel against leftist and Islamist critics. His remarks turned on a speech by Richard Kemp on 11 March 2015 at the University, which was disrupted by pro-Palestinian demonstrators, part of the boycott and divestment and sanctions (BDS) campaign to suppress pro-Israel voices. One demonstrator defended the free speech of Hizb ut-Tahrir, whose senior cleric in Australia referred to Jews as “the most evil creature of Allah” who had “corrupted the world” and will “pay for blood with blood”. Baldwin contrasted the BDS criticism of Kemp with their silence concerning Hamas’s stated goal of “exterminating every last Jew on earth’, he alleged. He singled out two Sydney University academics, Jake Lynch and Nick Riemer, as supporters of the BDS campaign. He continued his criticism of Hamas, which governs the Gaza Strip enclave of Palestinians, arguing that Israel is the most democratic country in the region. Support for Israel in any way can attract censorship. Jewish students at the University are feeling insecure. Anti-Zionism is increasingly a cover for “occulted anti-Semitism”.

Greg Sheridan. “Weakened Obama makes Iran the winner in Mid-East chaos.” Opinion. 102 col. cms. Sheridan criticises the Obama administration for being too soft on Iran, allowing it to expand its influence in the region. Obama is now politically too weak to get controversial legislation approved by Congress. The article does not examine the forces working against Obama, including the Israel lobby which is formidable, especially in the Senate. Sheridan is not blind to ethnic networking, pointing out that Iran has great influence in Iraq due to that country having a powerful Shia community. The article also fails to describe Obama’s ethnic motivation. He is criticised for excessive caution but no mention is made of his black nationalism. Obama was a professional ethnic activist before running for the Senate. Obama’s autobiography details his ethnocentrism and combative attitude towards white people. How can Obama’s ethnic view of the world be ignored in discussing his engagement in an area of foreign policy especially charged with ethnic lobbies? Finally, Hillary Clinton is described as a “serious” foreign minister, not at all an obvious assessment for a conservative commentator to make. This affected naivety is all too typical of Australia’s mainstream media. No wonder the public culture is impoverished concerning ethnicity and nationalism.

Page 14

Calum Wilson Austin (editor). Entertainment guide. “Lag Meta Aus: Home in the Torres Strait.” Announcement. 4 col. cms. Repeat of the notice for an exhibit at the National Museum of Australia, Canberra, of artworks, objects and stories indicating the history and culture of the Torres Strait Islands.

Page 17

Frazier Moore. “Tweets hound new Daily Show anchor.” News. 68 col. cms. Reports criticism of tweets sent by Trevor Noah, scheduled to replace Jon Stewart on the comedy program the Daily Program (U.S.A.). The article alleges a “backlash” over Noah’s “graphic” tweets that target Jews and women. When announced to follow Stewart, Noah was criticised on the social media network Twitter, for example by comedian Roseanne Barr: “U should cease sexist & anti semitic ‘humor’ about jewish women & Israel”. The article then quotes some of those offensive tweets. In one Noah joked about almost hitting a Jewish kid while driving a German car. He also referred to “Jewish chicks”. He also criticised the largely white American mid-West as ignorant. A writer for the online magazine Slate criticised the Daily Show’s choice of Noah. Noah is described as having a black African mother and a white father, and reflecting the values of “global multiculturalism”.

Summary. The dedicated ethnic stories in this issue of The Australian consisted of two news articles reporting indigenous affairs, a longer-than-usual opinion piece defending Israel and Jews from protests at Sydney university, an opinion piece trying to describe the Obama administration’s Middle East policy without examining ethnic factors, and a report of a comedian’s sexism and anti-Semitism and the criticism he has received. Total ethnic content was 525 col. cms., or 7 per cent of the 18 page news section.

Nation News: Wednesday 1 April 2015

The Australian for Wednesday 1st April 2015 carried almost no news or comment related to ethnic affairs in the main news section. However, a relevant opinion piece appeared in a separate “commentary” page in the business section.

Page 14

Calum Wilson Austin. “Nazi play heads for Old Fitz.” Announcement. 24 col. cms. (or 0.33 per cent of the 18 page section). This was the first entry in the entertainment guide for the day, also edited by Austin. Red Line Productions announced that its next set of productions would include the one-man play I Am My Own Wife, based on the true story of a German transvestite, Charlotte von Mahlsdorf, who survived the Nazi and East German communist regimes. The play won the 2004 Tony Award and Pulitzer Prize.

Page 29 (Business section)

Glenda Korporaal. “Shorten gets his poles and wires crossed in outlining Labor’s vision.” Opinion. 78 col. cms., including 2 small photos. Discusses federal Labor leader Bill Shorten’s statements in an interview while visiting China. Korporaal attempts to tie Shorten to the policy on foreign ownership advanced by Luke Foley, NSW state leader, during the previous week’s state election. Shorten refused to publicly disown Foley’s policy, saying that he could not give a “blank cheque to all foreign investment”. He also stated that China continued to hold Australia in high regard. Korporaal disagreed, asserting that Chinese who deal with Australia “will not forget”. But mainly her comment was an accusation of white bigotry directed at Foley and NSW Labor. Foley’s policy was a “disgraceful resort to xenophobia”. Labor’s policy stance was a “nasty anti-foreign investment campaign”. Labor “sought to stir up base populist risks if Chinese-owned firms bought into the assets”. Other “smears” used the name of Hong Kong businessman Li Kashing. The policy was “a new low”. Foley’s campaign raised fears specifically about Chinese investment. “When the chips were down, NSW Labor returned to the days of Arthur Caldwell and the White Australia policy”.

The attack on Foley seems overstated. The White Australia Policy concerned immigration, an area of policy Foley did not mention. The severity of the criticisms of Foley might have been moderated if critics had indicated what would constitute reasonable security concerns. If criteria are not stated, how can a policy be criticised for excessiveness? Defining reasonable security concerns would entail discussing the reality that China is a geopolitical competitor with Australia’s one important ally, the United States; that China is a communist dictatorship with a bloody history at odds with Western values; that China occupies and is suppressing non-Chinese nations in the Turkic west and Tibet. Without these factors being stated, we are left wondering whether the critics are wholly reasonable. If Chinese control of the electricity network presents no threat, what type of ownership would?

Nation News: Tuesday 31 March 2015

The Australian for Tuesday 31 March 2015 carried little ethnic news or comment. Much of the overseas news concerned ethnic and religious issues in Yemen, Palestine, Israel, Britain and France (on p. 9). However, this was of only indirect relevance to Australia.

Page 7

Andrew Burrell. “Race act cited in bid to save communities.” News. 37 col. cms. A legal challenge is being considered to oppose plans by the Liberal government of Western Australia to withdraw services from 150 of 274 remote outback communities. Nolan Hunter, chief executive of the peak indigenous body in the Kimberley region, the Kimberley Land Council, suggested that the plans were in violation of the Racial Discrimination Act because they targeted only Aboriginal settlements. “It’s not their fault that they live in a location that doesn’t have all of these services”, Hunter said. The state Aboriginal Affairs Minister, Peter Collier, stated that government plans did not breach the Act.

Summary. This issue of The Australian (31 March 2015) carried only 37 column centimetres of ethnic stories of direct relevance to Australia, making up about 0.5 per cent of the 18 page news section, including advertisements.

Nation News: Monday 30 March 2015

The Australian for Monday 30 March 2015 carried little ethnic news or comment.

Page 2

Katherine Towers. “Jewish victims lobby politicians.” News. 43 col. cms. Victims of child sexual assault in Melbourne’s ultra-orthodox Jewish community have written to the Prime Minister and other political leaders calling on them to intervene in the running of the Yeshiva school in question, by urging a change of administration. The eleven signatories claimed that the school was still run by individuals with the same mindset that overlooked the abuse. The recent royal commission into child sexual abuse heard testimony that responsible administration was impeded by the tradition of secrecy whereby victims who reported abuse to the non-Jewish authorities were threatened, intimidated and ostracised.

Page 5

Mark Coultan. “Foley needs new issues to stand a hope in 2019.” Opinion. 49 col. cms. In a brief passage Coultan criticised NSW Labor leader Luke Foley for making “hysterical claims about Chinese investment in the state electricity privitisation . . .”

Page 7

Sid Maher. “Shorten tarred with ‘Foley folly’.” News. 22 col. cms. Quotes federal Social Services Minister Scott Morrison criticising federal Labor leader Bill Shorten for showing signs of using tactics similar to Luke Foley. Morrison indicated he was referring to Foley’s concerns about foreign ownership, especially by Chinese interests. He warned Shorten against “fear campaigns and populist reactionary positions”.

Page 16

Calum Wilson Austin (editor). Local entertainment guide: “Lag Meta Aus: Home in the Torres Strait.” Public information. 7 col. cms. The exhibition of artwork, objects and stories that reflect the history and culture of the Torres Strait. National Museum of Australia, Canberra.

Summary. This issue of The Australian (30 March 2015) carried 121 column centimetres of ethnic stories and comments, which were about 1.7 per cent of the 18 page news section, including advertisements. That content consisted of an appeal to governments by Jewish victims of child abuse, criticism of the Labor Party for raising concerns about foreign ownership of (at present) public assets, and information about a museum exhibit of indigenous culture.

Nation News: Saturday 28-29 March 2015

This review of The Weekend Australian for 28-29 March 2015 will minimise content analysis and instead record the broad topic, especially the ethnic or religious groups being discussed and whether the item is positively or negatively oriented towards them.

Section 1: News

The front page was dominated by articles dealing with ethnic and religious issues. While there was an even split between ethnic and non-ethnic articles (3 each), the former occupied 229 column centimetres, the latter took up only 94. The indigenous theme provided the large page 1 photograph, of 78 column cms.

Page 1

Natasha Bita, National Education Correspondent. “Civil society remade: citizenship becomes a fluid idea at school.” News. Ends p. 2; 44 + 51 col. cms. Reports Kevin Donnelly’s criticism of a new national curriculum that relativises the meaning of citizenship. Donnelly claims that this fits a pattern of “anti-Western bias” and a “pejorative view of Christianity”. Criticism also came from Anne Twomey, the professor at Sydney University who heads the Constitutional Reform Unit at the University.

Matasja Robinson and Rick Morton. News. “Pearson’s beacon of hope.” Ends p. 8; 41 + 37 col. cms; photo on p. 8, 48 col. cms. Reports another plan by Cape York Aboriginal leader Noel Pearson to ameliorate the dysfunctions of indigenous communities. The plan is described as an “opt-in” that would “sweep aside 50 years of failed social policies and create a formal legislative compact between Aboriginal people and government”. The report does not identify Pearson’s plan as a form of treaty. But it does state that in 2012-13 Australian governments spent $30.3 billion (6% of total direct spending) on indigenous peoples. That was $43,449 for per capita, compared to $20,900 per capita for non-indigenous Australians.

Amos Aikman. “Amid the dust, thirst for success.” News. Ends p. 8; 27 + 32 col. cms.; 75 col. cms photo, p. 1. Reports examples of Pearson’s plan at work, with high hopes.

Page 3

Nicola Berkovic. “Indian cook wins $200k for ‘slavery’.” News. 62 col. cms. Reports the mistreatment of an Indian cook, Dulo Ram, brought to Australia to work in an Indian restaurant under the temporary skilled migration program (457 visa). The trafficked “slave” worker was awarded substantial payment to be provided by his ex-employer, Divye Kumar Trivedi.

Page 6

Rosie Lewis and Dennis Shanahan. News. “ALP xenophobic, reckless: Robb.” 27 col. cms. Reports Federal Trade Minister Andrew Robb accusing Labor leader Luke Foley of xenophobia and recklessness in cautioning against selling NSW’s electricity infrastructure to foreign buyers. Foley suggested that if China was the buyer, it might spy on the Armed Forces and cut power to them. Penny Wong, opposition spokeswoman for trade and investment, criticised Robb for damaging Australia’s reputation with his remarks.

Section 2: Inquirer

Page 15 (first page of section)

Paul Kelly. “Radical blueprint to end passive welfare.” Opinion. Ends p. 18. 56 + 88 col. cms. plus a photo of 65 col. cms. Kelly discusses the latest plan from Noel Pearson to overcome indigenous dysfunction.

Natasha Robinson, Cultural Affairs Writer. “As policies fail, Aborigines want to be responsible for themselves.” Opinion. Ends on p. 18.  36 + 82 col. cms. Adopts Pearson’s view that Aboriginal dysfunction is due to passive welfare, stating that “the white man’s charity is yet to loosen its strangling grip . . . eroding Aboriginal freedom, entrenching passivity and sustaining a flourishing industry.” Despite massive expenditure by governments, outcomes have been minimal. Inequality remains high. More than twice the number of children are being taken from Aboriginal parents than during the “stolen generation” program. Robinson, like Pearson, assumes the cause is “the wide gulf in opportunity”.

Page 19

Kevin Donnelly. “The school textbooks that gloss over jihad and leave Christianity smouldering at the stake.” Opinion. 102 col. cms. Donnelly reviews several textbooks being issued to Australian schools, alleging that they are biased against Christianity and in favour of Islam. The texts include Jacaranda, SOSE Alive 2 (2004), Oxford University Press, Big Ideas Australian Curriculum History 8 (2012), and a publication of the National Centre of Excellence for Islamic Studies at Melbourne University, Learning from One Another: Bringing Muslim Perspectives into Australian Schools (2010). Donnelly is an educational consultant appointed by the Abbott Coalition government to review the national curriculum produced by Rudd and Gillard appointees.

Page 20

Sam Lipski and Suzanne Rutland. “On a night for refuseniks, Hawke brought Palestinian conflict to the party.” Book extract (Let My People Go: The Untold Story of Australia and the Soviet Jews 1959-89, Hybrid Publishers). 192 col. cms., including a photo 21 col. cms. Described the relative policies towards Israel of two prime ministers, Bob Hawke and John Howard. After many years of support for Israel, sometimes alone and requiring courage, Hawke tarnished the special friendship of the Jewish leadership in 1988 because in a speech he drew an analogy between the Jewish refuseniks of the Soviet Union, the Palestinians in the occupied territories and black South Africans. They all yearned for freedom, Hawke said, and urged mutual recognition on acceptable conditions between Israel and the PLO. “With a few words, [Hawke’s] public persona changed from the Jewish state’s most passionate admirer in Australia to its sorely troubled critic.” These words also “ended more than a decade of friendship, business partnership and collaboration on Soviet Jewry between [Hawke] and [Isi] Leibler.” At the same event Howard did much better, praising Israel unconditionally. He would forge “a much stronger connection to the Melbourne Jewish leadership and to Australian Jews generally.” “Howard grew in stature” and when he became prime minister was held to be the most pro-Israel occupant of that position, showing greater enthusiasm than Liberal prime minister Malcolm Fraser and even Bob Hawke.

Page 23

Editorial. “Migrants and investors are driving property markets.” Opinion. 37 col. cms. The newspaper continued to advocate a “Big Australia”. To maintain Sydney’s position as a regional financial hub it should welcome foreign investors and promote population growth by catering for a high migrant intake.

Bill Leak. Cartoon. 48 col. cms. Implied that NSW Labor leader Luke Foley was a racist and a hypocrite in the state election campaign. Shows Foley stating: “Vote Liberal if you want your government taken over by racists and your jobs taken by Chinamen.” This referred to Foley’s criticism of the state government’s plan to lease 49% of the electricity infrastructure to private business, in particular the national security risks of Chinese ownership.

Section 3: Business

The only ethnic story was an opinion piece recommending that corporate board trading with Asia include a member with knowledge of the region.

Section 4: Weekend Australian Review

Greg Sheridan. The forum. Page 2. Opinion. 61 col. cms., including 23 col. cms. cartoon by Jon Kudelka. Sheridan once again takes up the anti-British theme by deriding the Prime Minister’s return to imperial honours – knights and dames. He repeatedly calls the practice ridiculous without supporting argument, but implies the argument that British honours contradict Australian egalitarian values because they suggest that the recipient is “inherently superior” to those without. Sheridan declares himself otherwise an “admirer” of Tony Abbott but that his decision is “the most culturally mistaken of any in his life”. He contrasts this to Alfred Deacon’s resistance to foreign honours. The piece does not discuss the factors of identity or tradition or reward for public service.

Section 5: Weekend Australian Magazine

No ethnic affairs discussed.


This Weekend Australian carried 444 column centimetres of ethnic content in the news section, just over one page or 7.6 per cent of 14 pp.). It carried 706 col. cms. in the Inquirer section (1.7 pages or 17 per cent from 10 pp.), and 61 col. cms. in the Review section (a marginal proportion), not counting the overwhelmingly Anglo subjects, themes and authors. The identity groups receiving attention (all positive) were Aborigines (several articles), Christians (Donnelly) and Jews (Lipski and Rutland). Remarkably, domestic Islamic issues received no treatment.

Nation News: Thursday 26 March 2015

This article continues to review of The Australian newspaper, this time for Thursday 26th March 2015. Again the focus is on national, ethnic and religious affairs.

Sarah Martin. “Net war key for Islamic State.” Pages 1 and 2, news, 15 + 40 column cms. A forum on extremism on social media at the ANU heard that the Islamic State is adept at online recruitment. The Immigration Minister, Peter Dutton, stated that the government needed to use every tool at its disposal to combat terrorism. (But immigration mechanisms were not mentioned in the report). In February Attorney General George Brandis announced an $18 million program to monitor and censor online recruitment by terrorist groups. Educational programs were also described.

Gina Rushton. “Third teen caught at airport.” Page 2, news, 45 column cms, including picture. Counter terrorism authorities detained a teenage boy on his way to fight with Islamic State. He was the third detained in a one week period. About 200 people have been intercepted on route to fight with terrorist groups.

Rachel Baxendale. “Islam forum speakers shrouded in secrecy.” Page 2, news, 30 column cms. The Islamic Research and Educational Academy refused to name the speakers invited to address a meeting in Melbourne scheduled for next weekend. A five-year old is an announced speaker. The article pointed to some associations. One announced speaker, Islamic convert Sheik Isa Graham, previously spoke at the Hume Islamic Youth Centre once attended by Jake Bilardi, the 18-year-old who became a suicide bomber, and at least two other individuals who joined Islamic State overseas. Victorian Police said that they expected a multicultural liaison officer to attend the event.

Michael Owen. “APY corruption ‘all down to whitefellas’.” Page 4, news, 45 column cms. At a hearing of the South Australian Aboriginal Lands Parliamentary Standing Committee, Ms Lesley Johns, a former consultant to the Anangu Pitjantjatjara Yankunytjatjara Lands Corporation (APY) claimed that the Corporation board was not corrupt but that “many whitefellas have got away with highway robbery”. The APY receives about $200 million a year. The APY has been the subject of controversy and government inquiry over allegations of financial impropriety raised by The Australian newspaper.

Ean Higgins and Mark Coultan. “China go-between slams Foley ‘yellow peril’ play.” Page 4, news, 125 column cms, including large picture. Jim Harrowell, president of the NSW branch of the Australia China Business Council, has criticised NSW Labor Party leader Luke Foley for raising security concerns should Chinese interests purchased the state’s electricity infrastructure. Foley suggested that Chinese owners could spy on military and parliamentary activities. Former foreign minister, Bob Carr, long-time labor premier of NSW who has championed Chinese relations, declined to comment. Fred Nile, head of the minority Christian Democratic Party in the NSW parliament, was more concerned about Chinese purchase of the network than Canadian or New Zealand. Foley stated that no foreign government, “friend of foe” should be permitted to buy the infrastructure. He declined to name a “foe” government. NSW premier Baird stated that the government’s intention was not to sell the assets but to lease them.

AFP. “Barack’s issues with Bibi ‘not personal’.” Page 9, news, 48 column cms. The Wall Street Journal (also owned by the Murdoch media chain) reported that leaks from the White House accuse Israel of spying on US-Iran nuclear negotiations with the aim of preventing a deal by informing US legislators. Israeli official denied the report. The Obama administration supports the two-state solution, which Netanyahu disowned during the recent Israeli elections. An Israeli professor, Jonathan Rynhold, commented that the frosty relations between the two governments was dangerous for Israel. “[W]ill the US always use its (UN) veto for Israel?”

Roger Boyes, reprinted from The Times. “Western vision of strongman leaders will keep Africa weak”. Page 10, opinion, 62 column cms. The Times of London is owned by the Murdoch chain of newspapers, as is The Australian. Boyes criticised Western powers for promoting strongman leaders in Africa since the 1960s. Another cause of poor leadership was arbitrary state boundaries drawn up by European colonial powers. (By “arbitrary” Boyes means that state boundaries did not correspond with tribal boundaries, increasing ethno-cultural diversity and making it difficult for Africa to develop nation states along European lines.) Strongmen have been bad for African stability and development. There were over 60 coups between 1960 and 1990. Many leaders stole from the public purse on a massive scale. Boyes describes the extreme and comic case of Sani Abacha of Nigeria. Western aid helps the population but takes pressure of governments to find solutions. Boyes ends by giving advice to Africans and their leaders.

Greg Sheridan. “Fraser was no saint for Vietnamese refugees.” Page 12, opinion, 87 column cm. Sheridan continues his criticism of the late Malcolm Fraser, who died the previous week. He disagrees with the perception that Fraser generously accepted 50,000 Vietnamese refugees from Vietnam. Instead, he claims, Fraser at first resisted accepting the refugees but bowed to US pressure to do so. Sheridan refers to an article by Rachel Stevens in the Journal of Politics and History in 2012, which identifies four phases of the debate over Vietnamese refugees. In the first and second phases Fraser opposed large intakes. Sheridan provides some personal information. In 1975-1977 he was an undergraduate student activist for B.A. Santamaria’s National Civic Council, which was strongly involved in lobbying the government to accept Vietnamese refugees. Sheridan sees this phase of activity as “one of the main political activities of my life. I was heavily involved . . .” This fits Sheridan’s statement elsewhere that he has been promoting Asian immigration since his first days as a journalist, and that he welcomes the cultural genocide of Anglo Australia that resulted from that immigration.

David Uren. “Fertile grounds for big country.” Page 12, opinion, 74 column cms. Uren argues for the benefits of rapid population growth through immigration. The main benefit has been to the economy, which has averaged GDP growth of 2.5 per cent over the last six years of enlarged intakes. However, most of this growth is due to larger population, not to increases in per capita income. Since the intake was expanded in 2008, per capita GDP has fallen from 2.2 to 0.7 per cent. In other words, incomes are stagnating due to high immigration. Fears of population growth are irrational, Uren thinks. Those fears should be countered by firm leadership, not by hiding the facts, as he accuses prime minister Tony Abbott of doing.

Bill Leak. Cartoon. Page 13, humour, 52 column cms. The cartoon depicts a woman in Islamic dress looking at her baby and saying to her husband, who is of Middle Eastern appearance: “Come here Abdul. Quick! He’s just issued his first fatwa!” The cartoon light-heartedly mocks a popular stereotype of Islamic culture.

Jack Malvern. “Recovery at last for Nazi-looted El Greco.” Page 15, news, 43 column cms, including small photo. A valuable painting stolen by the Gestapo in 1938 from the Jewish industrialist Julius Priester, has been returned to his hiers.

Iain Shedden. “Folk of all kind, just enjoying the music.” Page 15, news, 132 column cms. Shedden previews the Canberra National Folk Festival, 2-6 April. Shedden does not mention that Anglo-Celtic folk music performers and Europe-derived music predominates at the Festival. There is no official ethnic dimension but the event is implicitly Anglo Australian, perhaps because the large non-Anglo population arrived too recently to become engaged in folk music or perhaps because those new cultures do not have traditions that fit the event. Shedden does note the “sense of community”, the “organic nature of the festival” that adds to its appeal. This is an example of a de facto ethnic event not being identified as such.

Summary. This issue had 796 column centimetres of content dealing with national, ethnic and religious affairs, which was 8.7 per cent of the news section, including advertisements (i.e. 18 pp.). Most coverage was given to Islamic terrorism and related matters (3 articles). This is understandable given the recent attacks on Australian soil and the intelligence warning that further attacks are likely. In that context, it is noteworthy that Rachel Baxendale, who reported the ANU security forum, did not remark the Immigration Minister’s failure to include immigration restriction as one obvious method for limiting risk. There was an article reporting investigation of corruption in an Aboriginal corporation, an article reporting criticism of NSW Labor leader’s expression of security concerns about Chinese interests purchasing NSW’s electricity infrastructure, another article concerning US-Israeli relations, an opinion reprinted from The Times criticising Western states for imposing strong man leaders on Africa, an opinion by Greg Sheridan criticising the late Malcolm Fraser for not being sufficiently enthusiastic about Asian refugees, David Uren extolling rapid population growth through high immigration, cartoonist Bill Leak mocking Islamic culture, a report of a valuable painting stolen by the Nazis in 1938 returned to its Jewish owners, and a story about an Anglo-Celtic folk music festival in Canberra that does not report its Anglo ethnic character. Overall, this issue again indicated heavy filtering of ethnic news and opinion likely to enhance Anglo consciousness.

Nation News, Wednesday 25 March 2015

This article reviews The Australian newspaper for Wednesday 25th March 2015, concerning national, ethnic and religious affair.

Rachel Baxendale. “Koranic ‘kindy’: poster boy, 6, calls on kids to answer Prophet.” Page 1, news, 110 column cms, of which half is a photograph of a boy in Muslim headdress. The article finishes on p. 4 (34 col. cms). The article reports that a six year old boy was used to advertise a conference by the same organisation, Islamic Research and Educational Academy. In 2013 the organisation ran a conference at which posters called for amputation of the hands of thieves and women to save themselves from being raped by wearing hijabs. The 2013 conference had speakers who had been banned from speaking overseas due to their views on Jews, homosexuals and women.

Stefanie Balogh. “Australian children trapped in terror web, says Bishop.” Page 1, news, 35 column cms. The article finishes on page 4. Foreign Minister Bishop warns that Australian children are becoming involved in Islamic State activities as a result of their parents leaving Australia to join the terrorist organisation.

Peter Alford. “Terror funds flowing to Jakarta.” Page 2, news, 51 column cms. Significant amounts of money raised in Australia are being sent to fund Islamic State fighters. Australia and Indonesia are cooperating in gathering intelligence on the funding of Islamic terrorist groups. The key Australian agency involved is the Transaction Reports and Analysis Centre, Austrac. The report is significant for Australian ethnic affairs because it indicates some support among Australian Muslims for terrorism overseas and potentially in Australia.

Sarah Elks. “History weighs on house blessed with a first.” Page 4, news, 74 column cms, including photo. Leeane Enoch is the first Aboriginal woman elected to the Queensland parliament. Enoch received a tradition blessing from elder Evelyn Parkin.

Jamie Walker. “US not buying new Bibi reversal”. Page 9, news, 63 column cms. The Obama administration is ratcheting up pressure on Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel to grant Palestinians their own state. This is in reaction to Netanyahu’s electioneering promise to rightwing voters that he would oppose a Palestinian state and his criticism of Arab voters. The US is opposed to Israel annexing the West Bank. The article ends by directing readers to an editorial on the subject (see below).

The Times reprint. “Greek PM mentions the war as talks stall.” Page 10, news, 115 column cm, including large picture. Greece struggles to remain within the EU despite massive debt and political hurdles in achieving austerity. This long-unfolding situation is mirrored in several other countries on the European periphery. The story is relevant to Australia because it highlights the lack of solidarity among European nations. Poor regions are subsidised by taxpayers within a nation but much less so between nations. The role of ethnic diversity in channeling the EU’s economic crises is infrequently discussed.

John Lee. “The Chinese century is built on shaky foundations”. Page 12, opinion, 85 column cms. Contrary to widespread opinion, China’s economic expansion looks unsustainable due to massive debt and inefficiency. “The US clearly remains superior to China in every economic factor that matters.”

Editorial. “Eight-state ‘solution’ floated.” Page 13, opinion, 26 column cms. This criticises Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu for his preelection disowning of the two-state solution and his reference to Arab Israeli’s as outsiders. It notes the skepticism of the US. The main criticism is of Likud’s chauvinist position, especially the eight-state solution proposed by academic Mordechai Kedar, in which Palestinians territory would be broken up into eight cantons separated by Israeli territory. The editorial is critical of Likud’s promotion of Jewish settlement in the West Bank, now covering 40 per cent of that territory. On this occasion The Australian is siding with international opinion and against the Israeli right, a rare stance for the Murdoch press. This places the newspaper close to the position of Bob Carr, previous (Labor) foreign minister, who in his recent memoirs criticised Israeli expansionism and Australia’s Israel lobby. Carr was joined in his criticism of Israel and its Australian lobby by ex-prime minister Malcolm Fraser, who died last week. The left has been turning against Israel’s ethnic nationalism in a growingly fundamental way. Carr even came out in support of Labor Friends of Palestine, becoming its official patron. Carr accused Israel of moving towards “Apartheid”, as did ex-president Jimmy Carter in his 2006 book, Palestine: Peace Not Apartheid. At recently as November 2014, The Australian editorialised against Carr’s stance, declaring Israel to be a pluralist democracy. It would be significant if the The Australian’s editor is moving towards the left and the Obama administration’s position.

Gledhill. Letter to the editor. Page 13, opinion, 9 column inches. Gledhill criticises the late Malcolm Fraser for wrecking Rhodesia’s transition to black rule. He states that Fraser’s backing of the brutal Robert Mugabe resulted in the deaths of tens of thousands.

Cinema. “Holocaust film series.” Page 14, arts section, 9.5 column cms. The Series is presented by the Jewish International Film Festival.

Summary. The newspaper carried 531 column centimetres of articles on ethnic issues, which was about 7 per cent of the 18 page news section, including advertisements. The main themes were Islamic terrorism (3 articles) and Israel (2 articles), joined by an assortment of small articles on Aborigines, China and Greece’s financial woes.

Nation News, Tuesday 24 March 2015

This article is a review of news stories in one issue of The Australian newspaper – for Tuesday 24th March 2015 – concerning national, ethnic and religious affairs. The article reports the presence, or absence, of themes of human nature and biosocial factors in general. In particular it searches for reports and opinion pieces that represent the interests of Anglo Australians in the context of political multiculturalism in which most ethnicities are licensed by legislation and elite political culture to pursue their group interests. Ethnicity is of special interest from a biosocial perspective because ethnic change due to immigration or differential birth rates is human evolution at the population level.

Jared Owens: “MPs’ insults ‘trivialise reality of life under the Nazi jackboot’”. Page 7, news, 43 column cms. Reports Jewish leaders’ concern that political rhetoric that draws examples from Nazi Germany is discounting the solemnity of the crimes committed by the Third Reich, 1933-1945. The issue arose when the Prime Minister Tony Abbott likened Opposition Leader Bill Shorten to the German propaganda minister Joseph Goebbels.

Nick Cater: “Political correctness stifles vital debate”. Page 12, opinion, 108 column cms. In his comment, Cater calls for greater freedom in discussing racial and ethnic affairs. He begins by defending Tony Abbott against the charge of “casual racism” when he referred to drinking Guiness in his St. Patrick’s Day greeting. Trevor Phillips, former chairman of the UK Commission for Racial Equality, is beginning to criticise multiculturalism by pointing to its failures, such as the London Tube bombings of 2006 by British-born Muslim men. Cater criticises the race-relations officials for “policing the boundaries of acceptable speech”. The present Race Commissioner, Tim Soutphommasane, played the role of ethnic policeman following anti-terror raids, warning politicians against inflaming tensions. In Cater’s view such behaviour is inappropriate because it shuts down discussion.

Cater’s article portrays a conflict as between free speech and censoriousness, essentially a libertarian perspective. The ethnic-motivational dimension of the contest is overlooked, disappointing for an article devoted to ethnic issues. If one accepts that multiculturalism is, among other things, a system of ethnic hierarchy that subordinates Anglo Australians, then the Race Commissioner is an enforcer of minority interests against those of the Anglo majority. Soutphommasane is, in effect, a minority activist fighting for his people and allies at taxpayer expense. There would seem to be a conflict of interest involved.

Gary Johns: “Aborigines must face up to the hard questions”. Page 12, opinion, 74 column cms. Johns defends the Prime Minister Tony Abbott’s recent claim that many remote Aboriginal communities are not viable for financial reasons. Taxpayers cannot be expected to pay for lifestyle choices, Abbott maintained. Many commentators condemned this view but Johns defends it, and adds other reasons of health, education and jobs. “Almost every Aboriginal spokesperson has been blessed by three options: marrying out, migration and education.” Based on the Aboriginal experience, he states that “solidarity based on race is a curse”.

Phillip Adams: “The day I nearly killed Fraser”. Page 12, opinion, 50 column cms. Adams recalls an event at Sydney University that involved himself, Malcolm Fraser, John Howard and Nelson Mandela. Fraser and Mandela and Adams disliked Howard for allegedly opposing acceptance of Vietnamese refugees and defending Apartheid South Africa. The comment spiked Howard and commended Fraser and Mandela. The context was the recent death of Malcolm Fraser.

Nicholas Evans: “Artist with a language of her own”. Subhead: “Gabori taught us how to see”. Page 15, obituary, 186 column-centimetres, including two colour photos. Sally Gabori was an Aboriginal artist who died aged about 90. The article carried no political content.

Death of Lee Kuan Yew

The death of the founding leader of Singapore was treated by two pages of reports and tributes (790 column cms). This began on page 1 (ending on page 10) with an obituary (80 column cms) by foreign editor Greg Sheridan. Title: “We’re all the richer for Lion of Singapore’s leadership”. The obit was largely praiseful, though Lee was described as “ruthless”. Sheridan discussed Lee’s ethnic identity, reporting without comment Lee’s claim that he was not Chinese, despite being of Chinese descent. Chinese leader Zhou Enlai called Lee a banana, yellow on the outside, white on the inside. Sheridan reports that Lee emphasised traditional Confucian social values, without noting that this is an aspect of Chinese identity. He especially praised Lee’s support for the strong U.S. military presence in region and his soliciting of Australia’s greater engagement with Asia.

Sheridan’s article does not register the important place of ethnicity in Lee’s political thinking. He does note Lee’s criticism that Australia’s economic policy risked making them the “poor, white trash of Asia”. But Sheridan does not note that this was a racialised conception of Australia, made at a time – 1980 – when the country’s political elite was busy dismantling the reality behind the conception. Despite large ethnic change, Australia is still viewed as a European society. The article describes Singapore’s separation from Malaysia but fails to note the extraordinary ethnic correlation of the two sides: Malaysia remained majority Malay while Singapore was mainly Chinese with Indian and Malay minorities. Led by its Chinese majority, Singapore’s secession represented the fragmentation of a multicultural society. Sheridan also overlooked ethnic differences. Singapore rapidly rose to become a commercial centre, while the Chinese minority that remained in Malaysia dominated that country’s economy. The same asymmetry in economic performance exists wherever Chinese and Malays live together, such as in Indonesia and the Philippines.

Sheridan’s failure to discuss the ethnic dimension of Lee Kuan Yew’s thinking and challenges is odd considering that Lee once explained to him the critical importance of overcoming ethnic fractiousness in making Singapore a united society. Lee said that his most important decision was to make English the common language, which was not the ancestral language of Chinese, Malays or Indians. This prevented any of them feeling privileged or insulted. Achieving unity from diversity was one of Lee’s greatest achievement and one necessitating major effort, yet is barely acknowledged in the Australian media.

The omission of ethnicity is set in high relief by a quote immediately below Sheridan’s article. Lee had strong views about individual and racial differences, indicating familiarity with evolutionary ideas.

“I started believing all men were equal. I now know that’s the most unlikely thing ever to have been, because millions of years have passed over evolution, people have scattered across the face of this earth, been isolated from each other, developed independently, had different intermixtures between races, peoples, climates, soils . . .”

Lee believed that the culture of a people shaped their destiny. But unlike Western intellectuals, he believed that culture was genetically influenced. Perhaps Greg Sheridan and all the other Australian journalists writing about Lee Kuan Yew ignored this aspect of his views because it clashes with their ideology. The puzzle is that they did not criticise Lee. The silence on Lee’s political incorrectness is astonishing given the emphasis he laid on it. In 1994 he gave an extended interview to the journal Foreign Affairs, in which he adopted a racial view of history and cultural difference.

“[The World Bank] makes the hopeful assumption that all men are equal, that people all over the world are the same. They are not.

“Groups of people develop different characteristics when they have evolved for thousands of years separately. Genetics and history interact. The Native American Indian is genetically of the same stock as the Mongoloids of East Asia — the Chinese, the Koreans and the Japanese. But one group got cut off after the Bering Straits melted away. Without that land bridge they were totally isolated in America for thousands of years. The other, in East Asia, met successive invading forces from Central Asia and interacted with waves of people moving back and forth. The two groups may share certain characteristics, for instance if you measure the shape of their skulls and so on, but if you start testing them you find that they are different, most particularly in their neurological development, and their cultural values.

“Now if you gloss over these kinds of issues because it is politically incorrect to study them, then you have laid a land mine for yourself. This is what leads to the disappointments with social policies, embarked upon in America with great enthusiasm and expectations, but which yield such meager results. There isn’t a willingness to see things in their stark reality. But then I am not being politically correct.”

Perhaps it is unpleasant for Australian journalists to admit that the man who forged a backward Singapore into an economic powerhouse rejected the premises on which Australia has based its immigration and multicultural policies. Lee Kuan Yew had more in common with Australia’s founders and political leaders up to the 1960s than with those from Whitlam onwards.

The editorial (42 column cms) was more realistic, acknowledging that Singapore’s expulsion from Malaysia was bound up with the latter’s Chinese identity. Lee is quoted attributing Singapore’s success to its Chinese majority: “Had the mix in Singapore been different, had it been 75 per cent Indians, 15 per cent Malays and the rest Chinese, it would not have worked.”

Rowan Callick: “Tiny island’s giant leader”. Almost a full page article by the Asia-Pacific Editor. Obituary. 328 column cms. Callick fleshed out Lee Kuan Yew’s life with economic and political detail, especially about Lee’s relationship with Malaysia and China. Again, the ethnic dimension was overlooked.

There were two other articles on LKY, both on page 10. A story headed “Singapore steels for life without Lee” was reprinted from The Wall Street Journal, part of the Murdoch media chain. An article by Melanie Kirkpatrick, “Father of city-state waged war against foreign press”, about the lack of press freedom under Lee.

A recurring theme in the comments about Lee Kuan Yew was his illiberal policies towards press freedom and democracy. Lee was known to suppress the media and opposition parties. He was described as a strong man, though a benevolent one. No comparison was made with Australia’s bipartisan policies on immigration and multiculturalism or the illiberal legal apparatus set up under the Human Rights and Racial Discrimination bureaucracies. Nick Cater’s article reviewed above is part of an ongoing controversy concerning this illiberal aspect of Australian politics. The Racial Discrimination Act, especially section 18C which allows prosecution for merely causing offence, has often been headline news for the past year. Greg Sheridan himself recently described Australia’s unrestricted immigration policy as amounting to “benign cultural genocide”. Yet no commentator noted the resemblance between Singapore and Australia’s illiberality towards ethnic affairs or the very different directions in which strong government is leading the two societies. Lee Kuan Yew used an iron hand to keep his country safe from replacement level immigration and the debilitating diversity it produces, while Australia’s leaders have done the opposite. The contrast represents the difference between Eastern and Western multiculturalism. The former protects the ethnic interests of the majority, the latter not.

Summary. In this issue of The Australian 1,250 column centimetres of stories and comments dealt with ethnic issues, more than three full pages or about 17 per cent of the news section. No reporter or commentator adopted an Anglo or Western ethnocentric perspective, one that represented in part the interests of a particular religion, culture or ethnicity. Apart from one mention in the editorial, no commentator discussed ethnic interests or competition as factors in current events, even in the case of Lee Kuan Yew, a consummate ethnic politician who resorted to sometimes harsh methods to quell the tribal discord of multicultural Singapore. Neither was Lee’s Darwinian view of ethnic and racial differences acknowledged, let alone commented upon. The coverage of this statesman was devoid of messages that might raise doubts about Australia’s experiment with diversity.

Even commentators more to the right – Cater, Johns and Sheridan – adopted perspectives based on values of free-speech, free-markets and anti-communism. They did not write for Christianity or Anglo or white Australia. There are no such commentators in the mainstream media. In the multicultural context, in which minorities explicitly advance their ethnic and religious interests, this is further evidence of an undemocratic ethnic hierarchy in Australia in which only the majority founding ethnicity is subordinated.

Roger Scruton on hostile cultural elites

A recent essay by conservative English philosopher Roger Scruton accuses the West’s cultural elites, or an influential component of them, of being antagonistic towards their civilisation’s cultural achievements, of repudiating the art, music, architecture and literature that accumulated within a vibrant tradition from the Ancient Greeks to the beginning of the twentieth century.

Scruton begins his essay by observing that those who attempt to defend or renew the West’s cultural legacy are attacked as eccentrics or reactionaries. “This is especially the case in the universities and cultural institutions, where a kind of morose antipathy to the Western inheritance accompanies a deep suspicion of all those who wish to teach it and to build on it.”

This antipathy goes well beyond self criticism, which has characterised the West and fuelled its cultural changes. “Through all such upheavals our forebears maintained a distinctive continuity of interest and inspiration, which can be seen in all the institutions that survived into modern times, and of course in the extraordinary artistic traditions that are the glory of our civilisation.”

“At a certain stage, however, and for no apparent reason, self-criticism gave way to repudiation. Instead of subjecting our inheritance to a critical evaluation, seeking what is good in it and trying to understand and endorse the ties that binds us to it, a great many of those appointed as cultural stewards – professors of humanities, curators, producers, critics, cultural advisers and commissars – chose rather to turn their backs on it. The prevailing idea seemed to be ‘this is all dead and gone. We can pretend to be part of it, but the result will be pastiche or kitsch.’ And this repudiation of the tradition has been accompanied by vigorous denunciations of the social order and mores of those who formerly enjoyed or created it, whose sexist, racist, hierarchical, etc. attitudes apparently distance them incurably from us living now. I think everybody who has attended a humanities department in one of our universities will be familiar with this attitude, and with the ‘culture of repudiation’ that has arisen around it.”

Scruton could have added that the repudiation goes beyond the “social order and mores” of the peoples who created it to cold indifference towards those people’s very demographic continuity. He does not explore this harshest and most final of repudiations of the West but it is clear that like cultural hostility it also springs from the very institutions that should provide cultural leadership – the universities, museums, and artistic companies that train the next generation of creators, disseminators and critics.

Future historians will want to know how this top-down revolution occurred, how the West entered its Spenglerian death spiral. It is a question that we would do well to answer now, before the process becomes irreversible.

Democracy, Christianity and Reproductive Interests

A comment by John de Meyrick in The Australian,[i] “Still ticking after 750 years” reminds readers that 2015 is the 750th anniversary of the first English parliament, an event that laid the foundation for England’s and subsequently Australia’s parliamentary system of government.  De Meyrick connects this important development with Magna Carta, 50 years earlier in 1215, which laid the foundations for liberalism by limiting the power of the monarch and setting out various rights.  De Meyrick states that both events were led by the high aristocracy in an attempt to wrest some power from the king.  The reality was more complex and pregnant with implications for our times.

De Meyrick claims that the parliament of 1265 “creat[ed] the first early form of representative government”, which is both profoundly true and mistaken.  It is true in the sense that modern parliamentary government in Anglo-Saxon countries is linearly descended from England in 1265, just as their civil liberties are descended from England in 1215.  But it is misleading to date those noble traditions only from these two particular events.

The democratic impulse had deep roots in European tradition.  The Anglo-Saxon tribes that colonised England from the fifth century replaced kings who did not retain the confidence of their followers.  The tradition developed into witenagemots, assemblies of aristocrats and clerics called by English kings to advise them from the 7th to the 11th centuries.  The Icelandic general assembly, the Althing (general assembly) dates from the first half of the tenth century AD, as does the Jamtamot of Central Sweden.  The Anglo-Saxon and Scandinavian assemblies had even deeper roots in the ancient Germanic folkmoot, meeting of the folk.  Deeper roots still are apparent in Greek democracy and the Roman senate, at which policy was debated and decided.

To be fair, de Meyrick’s brief comment cannot be expected to be comprehensive.  Understandably he did not have space to discuss ethnic origins or how Christianity checked royal pretensions to absolute power.  Magna Carta and the first English parliament were not the result of a power struggle alone.  Another factor was also the Church’s pastoral duty to the common people.  The Medieval Church was an independent institution that forbade polygyny, even by aristocrats.  By preventing powerful men from having many wives, the chances of commoners to find wives was increased.  In effect the Church protected the reproductive interests of the lower orders.

Hunter gatherers are democratic and egalitarian.  But agriculture and the resulting social stratification generally broke down this equality as society becomes stratified.  Powerful men monopolise many women, effectively denying some in the lower orders the chance to find a wife. This also happened in pre-Christian Europe, though not to the extent shown in the Near East.  Perhaps that was because agriculture arrived later, allowing some hunter traditions to continue, or perhaps few genes accompanied the practice of agriculture as it spread into Europe from the Near East.  How did the Church manage to overcome this trend and thereby protect what is perhaps the most fundamental social equality, the ability to form a family?  The Church could frustrate this otherwise inexorable connection between stratification and polygyny because it was an independent institution that could censure monarchs by excommunicating them.  Once the sanctity of a king’s reign had been removed, he was more likely to be overthrown from within or invaded by without.

Christian support for monogamy had flow-on effects.  It increased social cohesion by giving most men wives and children and therefore a stake in defending society.  Consensus became possible, at least on some issues, opening the way to liberalism and democracy.  By contrast, polygynous societies are necessarily despotic because the lower orders must be forcibly excluded from the marriage market, at which point they have relatively little at stake in defending the social order.[ii]

The monogamy imposed by the Christian Church from the early Medieval period through to the early modern – almost a millennium – equalised people’s reproductive interests somewhat compared to other agrarian societies, by giving them all a chance to marry and have children.  Still, before the advent of the welfare state in the 19th and 20th centuries an individual’s fertility depended on his or her resources.  Gregory Clarke’s study of wills from 1200 to 1800 indicates that individuals with more resources – the aristocracy and more and more the emerging artisan and middle classes – had more children than the poor.  As a result genetic fitness accrued not to pugilists but to those who followed the law and worked diligently.  The .  Is civilisation shaped by Christianity was eugenic for traits of peacefulness, lawfulness and sustained work.  Christianity was the West’s evolutionary group strategy, to use Kevin MacDonald’s term.[iii]

By rendering society more cohesive, Christianity also helped European societies ward off invaders and assemble the collective goods, such as taxation and armies, needed to conduct intra-European warfare.  As societies were tribal, most citizens were ethnic kin.  By boosting social ties and cooperation, Christianity also served to protect and advance people’s ethnic genetic interests, the large store of gene copies they had (and have) in their ethnic groups.  This aggregate kinship, often called “inclusive fitness”, is orders of magnitude greater than that found in nuclear families, even within a region of low genetic variability such as Europe.  Ethnic kinship, and the fitness advantage of solidarity, was much greater in conflicts between European and non-European societies.[iv]

At the same time, the Church was an international institution that did not favour any particular Christian nation until the Reformation.  Under its auspices European warfare gradually became civilised in its treatment of prisoners and civilians.  Christian international law laid the precedent for a comity of nations, initially within Christendom, that moved towards an international order that optimised national, and hence ethnic, interests.

By joining forces with the lower orders, the Church helped limit the crown’s arbitrary power.  It is not often noted that the Church had a role in formulating the Magna Carta and the first parliament, not only by providing scribes but as a political ally.  This can be inferred from the Magna Carta’s clauses that protect ordinary citizens against arbitrary punishment (Habeas corpus) and unfair financial dealings.  Indeed, the document is perhaps the first instrument that regulates a monarch’s financial practices.  At the time one of the king’s instruments for raising revenue was the local Jewish community, and as a result they enjoyed royal protection. This acted as a general cover for all financial dealings, fair and unfair.  The Magna Carta laid down rules of fair financial dealing, such as disallowing Jewish lenders from seizing a widow’s assets should be husband die in debt.  While the document makes clear that it is directed at unfair dealings conducted by individuals of any religion, by concerning itself solely with the welfare of the Christians community this document ties the foundations of Western liberalism with ethnocentric particularism.

The implication is that liberalism and democracy originated in societies with strong Western cultural and religious identities that were relatively homogeneous on both counts.  This remained the situation while Western elites continued the Church’s tradition of ethnocentric pastoral duty, helping explain the emergence of the modern nation state.  The tradition continued until the decades following the Second World War.

The big question is whether the heritage of Magna Carta and representative democracy can survive the radical diversification imposed by alienated Western elites from the 1960s. The rise of the intolerant globalist left and its disproportionate influence in public education and the media do not bode well.



[i] John de Meyrick (2015). “Still ticking after 750 years”, The Australian, 29 January, p. 10.

[ii] Alexander, R. D. (1979). Darwinism and human affairs. Seattle, University of Washington Press.

MacDonald, K. B. (1995). “The establishment and maintenance of socially imposed monogamy in Western Europe [with peer commentary].” Politics and the Life Sciences 14(1): 3-46.

[iii] Clark, G. (2007). A farewell to alms: A brief economic history of the world. Princeton, NJ, Princeton University Press.

Clark, G. (2014). The son also rises: Surnames and the history of social mobility. Princeton, Princeton University Press.

[iv] Salter, F. K. (2007). On genetic interests : family, ethnicity, and humanity in an age of mass migration. New Brunswick, N.J., Transaction Publishers.


Acknowledgment of Nation

We acknowledge the explorers and pioneers and their descendants who planted the British flag and Christian faith on this continent, creating the Australian nation.  We acknowledge the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples who have lived here since the Dreamtime. And we acknowledge the Federal Commonwealth of Australia, created by the nation under the Crown to guard the liberty of all citizens

Performance notes. Detail should be added to fit the occasion. For example, the identity and achievements of the pioneers and indigenous peoples might be elaborated, as might the functions of the Commonwealth.

Version date:  22 January 2015.

Explanatory notes

Summary.  The “Acknowledgment of Country” (AoC) ceremony purports to recognise Australia’s origins but focuses exclusively on indigenous peoples.  It purports to respect the traditional owners of the land but ignores the nation’s sovereignty.  There is no counterbalancing statement of national origins used in school assemblies or public meetings.  To correct this imbalance, an Acknowledgment of Nation is suggested that supplements recognition of original indigenous habitation with acknowledgment of the origins of the Australian nation and the Federal Commonwealth it created under the crown.

In the last several years I have observed many “Acknowledgment of Country” (AoC) ceremonies. The wording varies but typically, at the start of a meeting, the master of ceremonies declares that the meeting is being held on the traditional lands of a particular indigenous people or peoples in general, describes them as the traditional custodians or owners of the land, acknowledges their close tie with the land and pays respect to their elders. I have observed versions of this ceremony at public meetings, for example at the New South Wales Parliament, in school assemblies, and on television and radio broadcasts.

My impression is that the ceremony is performed at schools and public meetings throughout the country.

That is a pity because, whatever its motivation, it amounts to a psychological assault on most Australians. Because it is not accompanied by an acknowledgment of national origins the ceremony ritually degrades most Australians’ sense of national identity and alienates the nation from its homeland and from most of its history.

The saddest examples are recitations at school assemblies, where children are told, repeatedly throughout the year, that their country belongs to Aborigines and Torres Strait Islanders.  The Acknowledgment appears to have taken the place of the loyalty pledge.  Usually words other than “owned” are used, but the meaning is clear.  One school I have observed concludes its ritual with the words “under the concrete and asphalt, this land was, is, and always shall be, the traditional lands of [the local indigenous people]”. The ritual makes no reference to the ancestors or national identity of the overwhelming majority of students – only 3 per cent of Australians are of indigenous descent.  The Acknowledgment is a ritualised slap in the face to most Australians.

We all need secure communal identities that position us historically, culturally and geographically.  That is especially true of children and young adults.  The Acknowledgment of Country ritual is meant to affirm that identity and pride for indigenous peoples.  But it ignores the origins of the nation as a whole.  The Aboriginal acknowledgment is justified as a statement of origins.  But national origins consist of much more than indigenous prior habitation.  The AoC needs to be supplemented to become an Acknowledgment of Nation (AoN), one that accurately describes national origins.

Any recitation of national origins should have at its heart a historically accurate description of how the nation was founded.  Indigenous Australians are a part of that story because their ancestors occupied the land when it was settled under British auspices.  Aborigines and Torres Strait Islanders are Australia’s first peoples. Anglo Australians are Australia’s first nation.

An acknowledgment of the historic nation needs to talk primarily about the people among whom national consciousness first arose in the late nineteenth century.  Who were they and who did they think they were?  The acknowledgment should also state the connection between this national awakening and the establishment of the Commonwealth, formed in 1901 when the self-governing colonies became states within the new Federation.  It is often asserted that the nation began in 1901 with Federation, but that is not true.

National consciousness arose among people of mostly British descent who thought of themselves as such.  At the time there was no Commonwealth but self-governing colonies.  Most thought of Britain as the mother country but also identified with Australia.  This was the most cohesive class of nation, an ethnic group living in its homeland.  It was not the type of “nation” whose only social glue is belief in an ideology or set of values or a constitution.  It was the heavy duty type of bond, the kind needed to undertake great things.  Indeed, this identification inspired and facilitated the constitutional conventions of the 1890s, with the goal of federating the colonies for the purposes of common defence and economy.  The nation created the Commonwealth.

An organising principle of the proposed AoN is that peoples take priority over political systems.  The nation has priority of recognition because it was the first nation in Australia and created the Commonwealth.  It represents continuity of identity stretching back to the emergence, in the second half of the nineteenth century, of national feeling among people who thought of themselves as a branch of the British people and Empire. That consciousness and descent connected the new nation to the First Fleet of 1788, to Britain and its constituent nations, to Christendom and its European precursors in ancient times.  In that sense the Australian nation has roots as ancient as the indigenous peoples it absorbed.  In addition the descendants of the historic nation and those who have assimilated into it remain the largest ethnic group in Australia. It is also the leading culture in the sense that all other ethnicities tend to acculturate to it more than vice versa.

The indigenous peoples should be acknowledged because they identified with their parts of Australia long before British colonisation began.  Any recognition of origins demands acknowledgment of indigenous peoples, whether one believes that their lands were annexed or conquered by the British.

The Federal Commonwealth should be acknowledged because it is the original instrument of continent-wide government and the institutional basis for citizenship, which defines the rights and duties of all Australians.

A brief statement necessarily fails to acknowledge all contributions to origins, some important.  For example, the statement recognises the explorers and pioneers and that they came under British auspices but it does not acknowledge the nations of Britain – England, Wales, Scotland and Ireland.  Nor does it acknowledge the investment made by the British people through their government in colonising Australia.  The statement does not mention convicts, subsuming them under the category of (involuntary) pioneers.  Nor does it mention the contributions of law, politics, culture, national character and technology brought by the largely British settlers.  Also unmentioned are the hundreds of indigenous peoples and languages, their way of life and spirituality, and special connection with their lands.  It would be appropriate for acknowledgments recited in particular districts to name and describe the local culture, which would convey a greater degree of particularity.

The Christianity of the nation’s founders is made explicit in the proposed Acknowledgment because it was a prominent conscious element of their identity, as it was of Britain and the remainder of Western civilisation in Europe and America.

Some will object that the proposed AoN omits the non-Anglo-Celtic identities that now form a substantial fraction of the population.  Typically those identities are encompassed using the adjectives “multicultural” and “diverse”.  It is sometimes contended that Australia is no longer an Anglo nation, that it has become a new type of nation whose identity consists of the multicultural character of its citizens.  It is sometimes argued that Australia’s lack of a single cultural identity is now its identifying mark.  And a likely assertion will be that an acknowledgment that omits the non-Anglo elements of the nation would be divisive by creating ill-feeling among millions of citizens.  This potential objection should be taken seriously, though it is noteworthy that those who promote and accept the present acknowledgment ceremony express no concern about its own exclusions.

It is reasonable to reject the objection on two grounds.  Firstly, the diversity that has arisen in recent decades was not part of national origins.  Recall that the nation emerged by about 1880.  It is wrong to claim that diversity was a founding principle then or in 1901.  Not diversity but continuity with British and European identity was in the minds of the Founders and in the census statistics.  The nation and Commonwealth were in existence long before diversity began rising after the Second World War.  Unless the Acknowledgment is to become a running commentary on every demographic change, it should remain focused on origins.  If it were to focus on the present population instead of origins, that would necessarily demote the indigenous component.  If they were given a special acknowledgment, it would be unprincipled to ignore the historic nation.

The second reason it is unnecessary to acknowledge diversity in a statement of national origins is that the proposed AoN recognises the Commonwealth and citizenship, which encompasses Australians of all backgrounds.  It is not beyond the maturity of immigrants or their children to acknowledge that the nation was in existence before they arrived.

If it were decided to acknowledge multicultural Australia, two avenues present themselves.  The first would be for the acknowledgment to list all the ethnicities of post WWII immigrants, perhaps on a first-come-first-served basis.  The second would be to refer to these peoples collectively as “multicultural”.  I think that most would reject the first approach as impractical.  However, the latter ignores the actual identities of citizens.  For example, to include Italian Australians under the heading “multicultural” would give no particular recognition to that culture; the same term would apply if not one Italian had immigrated after 1949.  The same term would apply to any diverse country.  It seems the only practicable way to recognise the country’s diversity would be in terms that are exceedingly shallow.

Placing the historic nation and Commonwealth in the acknowledgment ritual would restore their proper places in the story of Australia.  An Acknowledgment of Nation would be relevant to all Australians.

Another acknowledgment:  This is the latest in a series of versions posted since late 2014.  I thank all those who corresponded with me on the subject for their suggestions.



Hostile Western Elites – the Sydney Siege

This post continues the theme of elite hostility towards Western peoples, most unambiguously demonstrated by the drive to break down Western, and only Western, nation states by transforming them into multi-ethnic states. The ethnic antagonism behind this goal is exemplified by senior journalist Greg Sheridan who recently described the effect of mass Asian immigration – the displacement of Anglo Australia – as “benign cultural genocide”.

Ethnic conflict was common in the human past and still is. So it is to be expected that ethnic conflict is a major cause of hostility within multi-ethnic societies, such as Australia has been made over the last forty years.

A recent example of animus towards white Australians comes from the tragic terrorist attack in Sydney in which a Muslim extremist, Man Haron Monis, took 17 hostages in a cafe and murdered two of them. Monis was anything but a member of the political or cultural leadership but the latters’ responses to the siege revealed much.

Even before the victims were killed media commentators began expressing concern about potential popular reaction. Muslims were interviewed on the subject. Concern about possible anti-Muslim reaction was expressed across television and radio channels. There was not one voice speaking for Anglo Australian interests or critical of Muslim behaviour, though in recent years all of the many terror attacks – more attempted than successful – have been committed by Islamists. And predictably there was no backlash, with no incidents being reported.

That media climate reflects long preparation by the humanities and social sciences, where “anti-racism” ideology has long been a staple of the curriculum and lecturer bias. One strand of that curriculum has been “whiteness studies”, in which Western peoples, especially white Americans, are singled out as uniquely racist.

So it is not surprising that the hashtag “#illridewithyou” went viral on Twitter. The message was popular because it was seen to express sympathy for (potential) innocent victims of a (potential) white backlash to the siege, a theme for which the younger generation had been primed. Its underlying bias could all the more be overlooked because its assumption that white people are especially prone to ethnically-motivated thuggery was not noted or criticised in the media or twitter. As a result those who relayed the tag had no way of knowing what motivated its originators. Probably the overwhelming majority of retweets had only prosocial motivations. Not so the professionals who formulated it.

Tessa Kum, who wrote the hashtag, attributes the inspiration to a facebook entry by Sarah Jacobs, in which the latter expected an ugly backlash by Australians against Muslims. Jacobs reported showing sympathy for a Muslim woman who had removed her headdress, a gesture that Kum’s tag distilled.

Jacobs is a 37-year-old lecturer in Education at the Catholic University in Brisbane, the capital of the state of Queensland. In an interview in the Brisbane Times on 16 Dec. 2014, Jacobs expressed intense suspicion and distance from her fellow citizens. The goal of her facebook entry was to make people “think about the victims of the siege who were not in the cafe”, meaning she wanted people to care not about the actual victims but those who might be victimised should a backlash occur. The backlash would be massive, an “avalanche of ignorance”. In fact the reaction to her post was such that she described it as an “avalanche of kindness”. Still, she sees the social media campaign that she initiated as a “pre-emptive strike against racism and bigotry”, against “fear and ignorance”, and against the “racists, bigots and anyone who dares to derive a message of hate” from the incident, namely judging all Muslims by the actions of one terrorist. Jacobs admitted that “there are reasoned and tolerant people that walk among us” and declared that anyone who spreads intolerance towards Muslims is not welcome in Australia. Jacobs stated that she is the daughter of Indian immigrants.

Jacobs’ view that Australians are ready to negatively judge Muslims on the basis of one terrorist is out of touch with the common knowledge that Australia has been targeted by numerous Islamist attacks and plots in the last decade. There appears to be no basis for the imputation that native Australians are unthinking compared to immigrants. But Jacob’s alienation from the Australian people is mild compared to that of Tess Kum.

Kum is a writer based in Melbourne. Her hashtag, #illridewithyou, was taken to be an expression of compassion by an ABC interviewer. But Kum explains in a long post that her hatred of white people is at least as important a motive as care for non-whites.

I’m learning about hate because I am coming to hate you, white person. You have all the control, all the power, all the privilege, and there is nothing holding you accountable. I hate the double standards and hypocrisy you display, the rank dishonesty of your conduct. I hate that you can harm us, when we cannot harm you. I hate that you have actually impacted on careers, multiple and not even directly, with your hypocrisy. I hate that you’re so dominant in the publishing industry there’s very few venues I’d consider safe to even submit to now. I hate what you have done to PoC I don’t know. I hate what you have done to PoC I do know. I hate what you have done to me, and I was not involved. [“The Long Campaign Against Racism”, 6.11.2014]

Notice the categorical criticisms and hostility directed at whites. When expressed by white people against non-whites, such spiteful incitement could qualify for prosecution under the Racial Discrimination Act. It would certainly not qualify for glowing reviews.

The esoteric terms “PoC” (people or person of colour) and “WoC” (woman of colour) occur throughout Kum’s blog. She notes their American origin, where they are part of the jargon of the anti-white Marxist ideology known as whiteness studies. She takes these concepts very personally, identifying herself as a WoC made to “feel cheap” by white hegemony. “My privilege is being ambiguous in my physicality; as it’s not easy to identify which ‘other’ I am, most people are hesitant to voice what they know to be racist-ass opinions around me. The discrimination and bigotry I experience is largely unconscious and insidious . . .”.

Kum is obsessed with racial enemies and is intensly hostile towards them, a frame of mind  rare among Australians and other Westerners. This does not fit the image promulgated by the media of a racist majority subjecting tolerant PoC to verbal attack.

The same hashtag message served two opposed motives. It was invented by an individual who sees Anglo Australia as a hated enemy tribe. To Tessa Kum white Australians are restless natives, alien and threatening. But the message was accepted by many Anglo Australians as a message urging tolerance and love between ethnic groups. Multiculturalism carries the same double meaning.

Neither Sarah Jacobs or Tessa Kum occupy high positions or command great resources. Nevertheless, taken together with the support it received from the mainstream media, the Jacobs-Kum hashtag should be counted as an expression of elite hostility towards white Australia.

Hostile Western Elites: Captured?

Emeritus Professor of Law David Flint AM argues that the terrorist Man Haron Monis would not have been at liberty to commit murder in a Sydney cafe in December 2014 if the New South Wales legislative process had not been captured by political factions and left ideologues.[i] His contention that political and administrative elites have in a sense been captured by untoward forces or processes has merit and is an important observation, though his characterisation of those forces leaves room for further work.

Before describing Flint’s argument, it should be noted that he is a credible witness for reporting elite legislative processes. His career began when he was admitted as a lawyer in NSW and England. His lectures at universities generally combined legal and business matters. In 1977 he served a year as head of the Faculty of Business at the University of Technology, Sydney. From 1987 until 1997 he served as the University’s Dean of Law. He was appointed to various other high level functions, not surprising in light of his being named World Outstanding Legal Scholar by the World Jurists Association in 1991. He is widely published on legal, legislative and business subjects, including elites (The Twilight of the Elites, 2003).

The essentials of Flint’s argument begin with the reasonable assertion that once upon a time someone like Monis would not have been allowed into Australia, would not have been granted citizenship, and not have been allowed to live drone-like from the taxes of the Australian people. When this era of prudence ended is not stated but Flint implies that it was some decades ago because only hundreds of thousands or perhaps millions of Australians remember it. And it could not have been recent decades because it was a time when “the nation’s political class was little different from the rank and file. We all shared the same Australian qualities of common sense, good judgment and basic decency.”

How could someone so criminal, so fanatical and so parasitic not only be granted citizenship but be released on bail while charged with serious offenses? “The answer lies in the capture of the nation’s and the state of NSW’s legislative process, administration and bench, and their consequent failure to fulfil the reasonable expectations of rank-and-file Australians.” (Emphasis added.)

Flint proposes two agencies that have effectively captured the political and administrative elites.

The first agency is the rise of political factions, that have robbed members of parliament of their freedom of judgment. They are compelled to vote as their factional bosses direct in order to secure a comfortable retirement. A problem here is that factionalism has been part and parcel of Australian politics for at least a century. Parties themselves are a type of faction that restrict the independence of members, and parties go back centuries. The faction concept might be more useful if broadened to include lobbies of one sort or another – business or religious for example – that capture elites using inducements, threats or persuasion.

The second reason Flint advances is more plausible, that ultra civil libertarian thinkers hold sway over changes to the legal process. This resulted in “radically utopian” changes to the bail act that resulted in the public being exposed to Monis.

David Flint has been critical of out-of-touch elites for some time, at least since he wrote The Twilight of the Elites in the first years of this century. This important topic points us towards the ideological, sociological and demographic dimensions of the corruption of elite leadership in Australia, going far enough back to account for Monis’s immigration in 1996.

To explain the political elites’ alienation from everyday Australians it is necessary to consider such sociological concepts as hegemony, in which power is exerted by indoctrinating people in empirical and moral doctrines. Related trends include the leftist dominance of the university system from the 1960s, resulting in the indoctrination of elites-in-training and the rise of utopian anti-Western ideological movements in the professional class, especially in academe, the media and entertainment. Elite alienation might also result from extreme levels of economic inequality now being seen in English-speaking societies, itself exacerbated by rising ethnic diversity, a solvent of social cohesion and trust.

In previous articles and posts I described hostile attitudes towards the Australian people on the part of political and media elites. Would Flint describe these people as captives or captors? What distinguishes the two categories? To make that distinction will require identifying the source of actors’ motivations, whether they are endogenous in characteristics such as personality and identity or are reactions to external manipulation.

The research literature on cultural warfare examines these questions indirectly. For example Eric Kaufmann’s monograph, The Rise and Fall of Anglo America (2004), examines how post-ethnic radical ideology (“cosmopolitanism”) originated and rose to capture elite universities in the U.S. by the 1950s or 1960s, initiating the top-down transformation that Flint describes and which is still unfolding in Australia and other Western societies. Kaufmann maintains that the leading motivation of those in the cosmopolitan vanguard was humanistic idealism, and that they won converts through force of analysis and moral passion. Once the movement gained momentum it began capturing institutions through educational indoctrination and intimidating critics, first university departments then whole disciplines and then government bureaucracies in a process foreseen by the Italian communist Antonio Gramsci. The latter stages of the process described by Kaufmann are not so different to Flint’s version of capture.

David Flint has put on the table the idea that (effective) elite hostility can be explained by their being captured in some way, either by political processes or ideologies. It remains to more fully describe this phenomenon.



[i] David Flint (2014). “Capture of legislative process, bench opened gates to Man Monis’s release”, The Australian, 19 December. (Abridged print version p. 24).


Hostile Western elites: Greg Sheridan

In trying to understand why Australia’s political leaders seem intent on ethnically transforming one of the world’s most stable, peaceful and prosperous nations I have suggested that this indicates hostility on the part of the country’s cultural elite.  This has been evident for decades in the media and universities.[i] To understand what has caused this animus it is necessary first to describe its expression.

A new example comes in The Weekend Australian (20-21 Sept. 2014, p. 20) from veteran journalist and commentator Greg Sheridan, who describes the “supplanting” of the historic Anglo-Australian nation by Asian immigration beginning about 40 years ago, in the late 1970s.  “[T]he racial and ethnic identity of Australia has been completely transformed”.  This is not something Sheridan regrets; he celebrates it.  The thing that swept away Anglo Australia was Asian immigration, Sheridan explains, and “[a]lmost nothing in Australian history has been as successful as Asian immigration”.  It seems Sheridan has no emotional connection to the old Australia, which still accounts for a majority of the population, the national culture, its political and judicial system, its core Christian heritage, science and technology and market economics. (Obviously Anglo Australia is very much alive, though wounded. Perhaps Sheridan is not describing but wishing.)

So indifferent is Sheridan towards the Australia of his birth and rearing that he adopts a clinical stance towards it.  He admits, without remorse, that Anglo Australia has undergone a “benign cultural genocide”. Anglo Australia “is gone forever”.  He even consents that “[i]t was not a bad race and it produced a good culture”.  It was an identity that animated Australia’s leaders, including John Curtin and Robert Menzies.  Sheridan remarks that Anglo Australia has been displaced by other ethnicities and cultures, and “I don’t feel at all unhappy about that because race and ethnicity are the least interesting or important things about a person.  It is the contents of their character that counts.” Incongruously, despite this cosmopolitan, Martin-Luther-King stance towards group identity, Sheridan explains that from his earliest journalism he advocated mass Asian immigration.  Could this be a Freudian slip? The cosmopolitan policy would be to remove ethnicity as a criterion for choosing immigrants, but Sheridan says he supported Asian immigration.  That reflects ethnic, not post-ethnic, motivation.

More seriously, “genocide” means deliberate human agency. Genocide is not just cultural or demographic change but destructive change imposed on a people or part of it on account of their identity.  The 1948 UN definition of genocide sets out five meanings, all of which begin with words implying deliberate human agency: killing, causing, deliberately inflicting, imposing, and forcibly transferring.  The UN considers attacks on a people’s culture to be evidence of intent “to destroy in whole or in part” and therefore a risk factor.  “The destruction of or attacks on cultural and religious property and symbols of the targeted group that may be designed to annihilate the historic presence of the group or groups”.[ii]

As a leading intellectual and a senior wordsmith by trade, Sheridan must know that genocide entails deliberateness.  Combined with his long-term support for specifically Asian immigration it is inescapable that Sheridan sees himself as an agent of the cultural destruction of the historic Australian nation.  Certainly he sees this type of genocide as benign but he does not offer a plausible explanation for how that adjective applies to the supplanting of a thriving nation that he admits was not bad and bore a good culture.  His remark that ethnic identity is of little value also needs to be examined.  Does he apply the same standard to all nations?

The context of these views also sheds light on Sheridan’s remorseless dissection of the rotting laboratory specimen he takes white Australia to be.  The above quotes are taken from an article by Sheridan criticising the proposal to recognise indigenous Australians in the Constitution.  His central argument is that doing so risks altering citizenship, the civic institution that has allowed the peaceful supplanting of Anglo Australia.  It would be the “height of folly” to trifle with such a successful institution by bringing ethnic identity into the Constitution.  In other words, nothing must stand in the way of multiculturalism and the replacement of white Australia that it entails, including recognition of Aboriginal Australians.

Remarkably Greg Sheridan is considered a conservative in Australian politics.  His anti-communism and support for the American alliance fit this description.  But his attitude towards Australia’s identity resembles Trotskyism.  This combination of moderation in most things except the survival of his nation challenges explanation.  Whatever his subjective outlook, he is objectively an Anglo-Celtic Australian by culture, homeland, race and religion.  He has a large stake in the continuity of that nation.  From an evolutionary perspective it is adaptive to defend one’s family and tribe and that is what people have done around the world, until the rise of far-left ideologies in the late nineteenth century. But Sheridan is meant to be a conservative. It would be fascinating and important to discover what motivates a moderate intellectual to promote the “benign cultural genocide” of his own people.

Understanding just a few such leading advocates of Australia’s ethnic transformation will help explain how a manifestly undemocratic and aggressive policy has been so successful.  To that end we need to understand how individuals such as Sheridan made their careers in the media, in his case with the Murdoch empire;  how it is that their colleagues tolerated or supported them;  their own ethnic attachments; the significant influences on their thinking; and the source of their extraordinary confidence despite evincing morally dubious beliefs.  Especially it is necessary to understand their ethnic motivations.  For casually accepting the cultural genocide of a nation, as Sheridan does, is not expected from a neutral cosmopolitan.  It is the sort of attitude one expects from someone with an ethnic axe to grind.

Sheridan is not alone in his view.  Elsewhere I recorded Malcolm Fraser’s damning remark that Anglo Saxon Australia “is dead”, and suggested that this indicates coldness if not hostility.  Fraser, one of the founders of Australian multiculturalism and replacement-level Asian immigration, has never been so insensitive as to describe assimilation of immigrant ethnic groups as constituting the death of their identities.

Disparaging pre-Second World War Australia as a “narrow, Anglo-Saxon society”[iii] and declaring “Anglo-Saxon Australia is dead”[iv] does not reflect empathy for Australia’s founding people and core national identity.  In his autobiography Fraser expressed suspicion about his fellow Australians when he insisted that they must not be consulted in setting immigration policy.  The same man who campaigned for majority rule in Rhodesia and South Africa thought that Australians did not qualify to make a democratic choice of their demographic future.  He thought it legitimate for governments to force immigration from anywhere against Australians’ will because, he argued, they would come to accept the decision sooner or later.[v]

From time to time other members of Australia’s hostile elite will be examined in Human Nature News.



[i] Salter, F. K. (2012). “The war against human nature III-1: Australia and the national question, part I: Race and the nation in the media.” Quadrant 56(10 (490)): 66-73.

Salter, F. K. (2012). “The war against human nature III-2: Australia and the national question, part II: Race and the nation in the universities.” Quadrant 56(11 (491)): 36-44.

[ii], accessed 23 September 2014.

[iii] Quoted in Maley, P. (2009). “Death of a leader of cultural revolution Jerzy Zubrzycki.” The Australian. Sydney, News Limited.,25197,25515026-12339,00.html

[iv] Quoted in Lopez, M. (2000). The origins of multiculturalism in Australian politics 1945-1975. Melbourne, Melbourne University Press, p. 440.

[v] Fraser, M. (2003). Common ground: Issues that should bind and not divide us. Camberwell, Victoria, Penguin, p. 250.


Genetic similarity of friends

New research finds that friends share about 1% of their genes, equivalent to the kinship between fourth cousins.[1]  The research has been widely reported, though its full significance for social dynamics has been missed by journalists.[2]  The lead author of the research paper, Nicholas Christakis of Yale University, stated: “One per cent may not sound much to the lay person but to geneticists it is a significant number. . . . Choosing friends wisely improves your chances of survival.”

If 1% is significant, the 6% genetic kinship that is typical among members of the same ethnic group is large.  That is the figure estimated by geneticist Henry Harpending in a recent paper,[3] discussed in a previous post. The researchers must know about ethnic kinship because they controlled for it in their study.  They did so by limiting the study to friends formed within the same ethnic group.  Only by doing so could they have detected the relatively slight similarity between friends, which otherwise would have been swamped by the much greater ethnic differences.

Christakis and Fowler conclude that the phenotypical similarity of friends, on which assortment is based, reflects genetic similarity.

The result is that friends form an intermediate pool of kinship concentration lying between the ethny and the clan. Within the clan the nuclear family is the most intense concentration of kinship , while geographical races and humanity as a whole are the least concentrated. In descending order of concentration, kinship runs thus: Nuclear family, extended family (clan), friends, ethny, race, humanity. The sizes of each of these run in the opposite direction. However, the aggregate kinship within each pool does not correspond in any simple way with concentration. For example, according to Christakis and Fowler’s new data, someone with five close friends has a store of only 5% of his or her genes in them,[4] while just one child carries 25% of a parent’s genome.[5] Also, an ethnic group can hold millions of copies of a member’s genome, though it is more difficult to invest in this large aggregate kinship.[6]

Sharing genes with friends must have paid off in greater fitness in the evolutionary past, the authors argue.  By the same reasoning helping fellow ethnics can also advance fitness in multi-ethnic societies.

These new data add to the growing evidence of the important of genetic kinship as a factor in social ties beyond the family, consistent with sociobiological theory.  The fact that people show persistent assortment along the lines of genetic similarity despite fulsome praise of diversity in schools and the media should strike a cautionary note.  The finding is consistent with evidence that diversity undermines social cohesion and increases conflict.[7]

A disappointing feature of the study is its failure to mention what was, to my knowledge, the first finding of genetic similarity among friends.  That was conducted by the late J. Philippe Rushton, the Canadian evolutionary psychologist and published in a paper titled “Genetic Similarity in Male Friends” in 1989.[8]  Rushton replicated this finding using different methods in 2005.[9]  These groundbreaking studies deserve to be acknowledged.

Frank Salter



[1] Christakis, N. A. and J. H. Fowler (2014). “Friendship and natural selection.” Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences file:///C:/Users/Frank/Documents/DataFilesHOME/2014conferences+papersHOME/Consultancy2014/HumanNatureNews140330/Posts-drafts1403/PNAS-2014-Christakis-1400825111.pdf.

[2] Hannah Devlin (2014). “Our friends are closer to us than we think”, The Australian, 16 July, p. 9. Reprinted from The Times of London.

[3] Salter, F. K. and H. Harpending (2013). “J. P. Rushton’s theory of ethnic nepotism.” Personality and Individual Differences 55: 256-260.

[4] 5 x 1%

[5] Both measures being made against the baseline of the parent’s ethnic population. For technical reasons parental kinship is 25%, half of the more intuitive measure of relatedness.

[6] Salter, F. K. (2007/2003). On genetic interests. Family, ethnicity, and humanity in an age of mass migration. New York, Transaction.

[7] Vanhanen, T. (2012). Ethnic conflicts: Their biological roots in ethnic nepotism. London, Ulster Institute for Social Research.

[8] Rushton, J. P. (1989). “Genetic similarity in male friends.” Ethology and Sociobiology 10: 361-73.

[9] Rushton, J. P. (2005). “Mate choice and friendship in twins: Evidence for genetic similarity.” Psychological Science 16(7): 555-59.


Eyes: Knowledge for Managers

Outline of 50 minute keynote address or 2 hour workshop

Ethologists follow behaviours. Some study large complex behaviour patterns such as courtship. Others focus on micro-gestures such as eyebrow raises or smiles.

Managers can also learn from observing their work groups one behaviour at a time.

One set of behaviours involves the eyes. Where our eyes look, at whom and for how long, is important for human sociality. Much knowledge has been accumulated on eye behaviour, mainly attention or “gaze direction”. Eye contact can cut or caress – a dagger in dominance contests and a feather in social grooming.

The keynote/workshop reviews the ethological and social psychological research on how looking affects groups and their leaders. In so doing it covers many of the concepts discussed in previous posts on ethology and organisations.

That review includes these topics:

1)      The origins of eye contact in social relations: human eyes are special; we are hardwired to pay attention to faces; mother-baby mutual regard; leadership and the focus of attention;

2)      Who is the leader of a group, the official manager or someone else? The pattern of looking is a valuable clue;

3)      It is also important to note who is NOT looking and when they look away. Is the speaker failing to command attention? Or is the cause depression, insubordination, boredom or tiredness?

4)      Gaze direction leaks emotions which are clues to stress or harmony. Is a worker feeling anger, contempt, fear, happiness, or sadness?

5)      Where employees look when speaking with managers is a clue to their relationship with them;

6)      Eye behaviour is a clue to personality;

7)      Managers sometimes need to watch but a stare can be threatening. How to keep looking without looking daggers?

8)      Lying eyes? It helps to know when someone is lying. Gaze and other facial expressions sometimes leak deception.

9)      How much can we change how we look at people?

Learning how to observe and interpret eyes holds lessons for studying other behaviours. Being an adept observer helps managers understand their teams and themselves.

What Ethology Can Do for Organisations


1)      Introduction

2)      History of the ethological approach

3)      Services offered by Social Technologies Pty Ltd

4)      Affordability of services



In an earlier post I summarised a recent Report indicating that heightened negative emotions and the stress that flows from them compromise mental wellbeing in organisations, reducing productivity. The annual cost to Australian business is $10.9 billion.[1] Substantial productivity benefits would be yielded by maintaining a mentally healthy workplace. Those benefits multiply if one includes morale as a part of mental well being. The Report hints at this when it recommends a “positive workplace”, though it does not provide details, such as how to operationalise or measure this characteristic.

The Report recommended tactics for improving mental wellbeing, mostly curative. The preventative actions, such as exercise, are not focused on at-risk personnel. This is a major shortcoming in the Report because prevention is better than cure.

In the previous post I recommended a complementary two-part strategy: analysing organisations to identify patterns of negative emotions and stress; and, based on this analysis, changing (only) those aspects of the organisation to reduce systemic negative affect. I recommended the behavioural science of ethology as a discipline suited to carrying out this strategy.

Ethology is the biological study of behaviour. In previous academic research I developed methods for observing emotional expressions and predicting their physiological correlates in many types of work organisation, as reported in my book Emotions in Command[2]. The theory helps identify immediate causes of such emotions as well as the larger systemic cause of human nature interacting with an organisation’s structure and processes. The approach is applicable to leadership in politics as well as in organisations.[3]

Observational method is a strength of ethology. While the mental health profile of an organisation can be approximated using questionnaire instruments such as the Kessler 6 Test for anxiety and depression, survey instruments alone are not reliable. That is partly because of a widespread reluctance to disclose mental ill health. In a recent study of 15,000 young Australians, over 60 per cent of those suffering mental conditions were reluctant to seek information or support, even from online and telephone counselling hotlines.[4] Ethology can complement these tests by identifying emotional stress points that can cause or exacerbate mental conditions. Typically the cause is an individual or procedure or recurring situation that induces negative emotions. Examples are the humiliation suffered by a manager whose authority is undermined or the fear and sadness in counter staff subjected to client aggression. Where observation is difficult these behaviours can be reported via interview.

History of the ethological approach

“Ethology” is not a word commonly used in management studies but ethological ideas have a deep connection with organisational analysis and practice.

1)      Frederick Winslow Taylor (1856-1915), the founder of the scientific management movement, pioneered quantitative analysis of work roles employing ethology-like naturalistic observation. However, Taylor’s theories were deficient in the area of social relations.

2)      The German social scientist Max Weber (1864-1920), whose work is foundational to the sociology of organisations, drew on personal observations of organisation life. His concept of charismatic leadership overlaps behavioural elements of dominance. This is contrasted with his concept of legal-rational administrative behaviour that is relatively detached from dominance and attendant emotions.

3)      The Human Relations movement of management research that originated with the Hawthorne studies (1924-1932) conducted by Elton Mayo (1880-1949) also used field observations to test hypotheses and make discoveries. Its emphasis of natural human groups and interpersonal communication resembles ethological theory.

4)      Abraham Maslow’s (1908-1970) influential theory of the hierarchy of needs had origins in his study of non-human primates,[5] presaging the use of primate models in management theory.[6]

5)      Antony Jay, who popularised management theory by co-writing the British television series Yes Minister, adopted an explicitly ethological perspective in his earlier book Corporation Man (subtitle: Why His Ancient Tribal Impulses Dominate the Life of the Modern Corporation).[7] His approach was developed further by American social scientists Gary Bernhard and Kalman Glantz.[8]

6)      Lionel Tiger, an American sociologist, has advised the U.S. Department of Defence on small-group dynamics based on his ethological study of “male bonds” evolved in hunting bands.[9] With anthropologist Robin Fox he identified some of the stresses incurred when people are constrained by artificial bureaucratic structures.[10]

7)      Stanley Milgram (1933-1984) explained the findings of his famous obedience studies by referring to evolved predispositions and dominance, drawing on early ethologists. He noted that authority, like dominance, is MODULAR, the same behaviours being shown at all levels in a hierarchy.[11]

8)      The “body language” movement began in the 1970s. In Australia Allan Pease made behavioural research on self presentation accessible to a broad public with advice on a range of issues from making a good impression through posture and dress to avoiding cultural misunderstandings.[12]

9)      Bob Deutsch, an American alumnus of the Max Planck Research Centre for Human Ethology, has for many years consulted to VIPs on self presentation, including the Emperor of Japan.

10)  In 1990 Frank Salter consulted to the Australian Taxation Office and the Family Court of Australia upon completion of his doctoral dissertation on organisational ethology. The subject in both cases was aggression shown by the public to counter staff.

11)  Evolutionary psychology, a field overlapping ethology, is inspiring a rethink of management based on social instincts. Nigel Nicholson, a professor at the London School of Management, is a leading theoretician in this endeavour.[13] The Australian human resource professional Andrew O’Keeffe is applying evolutionary psychology in this country, [14] advising on such topics as overcoming internal rivalry, organisational change, creative uses of gossip, and performance appraisal.

12)  In their book Primal Leadership, Daniel Goleman and colleagues argue for innate responses to leadership that explain the benefits of emotional intelligence. They identify six leadership styles, each with its emotional impact on the group (“resonance”).[15]

13)  Behavioural ecology also offers insights bearing on management, for example 2006 research by the Canadian research group led by R. E. White.[16]

14)  In 2008 Mark van Vugt, Robert Hogan and Robert B. Kaiser presented an evolutionary theory of leadership and followship that attributes a good deal to individual differences in personality.[17]  The leadership-followship combination likely evolved because it yielded more competitive groups and thus greater genetic fitness for all group members.  Hogan is the author of the industry-standard Hogan Personality Inventory, which also takes into account biosocial factors.[18]

15)  (Many of these management applications are reviewed in Emotions in Command.[19])

Summary of ethological services

The above precedents indicate that ethology can help identify stress and several other behavioural issues in organisations. Ethology deserves a place alongside other disciplines in assisting the management process. That place is not yet fully developed because ethology is not a mainstream subject in the social sciences or business schools. However the discipline already has some uses. The following services are offered by Social Technologies consultancy.

1)      Teaching ethological theory and methods. These have direct applications to management and organisational design, and offer new perspectives to HR and L&D professionals. Subjects include:

a)      Theory: Evolved sociality compared to the artificiality of formal organisations.

b)      Theory: Emotions and hierarchy.

c)      Theory: Types of directives with different emotional impacts.

d)     Theory: Aggression, bullying, conflict.

e)      Theory: Gender and sex differences. Signals and releasers. Scope for self-presentation.

f)       Theory: Gender. Social technologies to enhance the authority of men and women.

g)      Theory: Stress, its causes advertent and inadvertent; use in power games; and counter-measures.

h)      Theory: Motivations and how they are engaged by organisations.

i)        Theory: Ethnic ties and conflict; signals and responses; building multi-ethnic teams.

j)        Method: Choosing observational categories (what to look for). Obtrusiveness. Qualitative versus quantitative.

2)      Leadership development by coaching or teaching. Subjects include:

a)      Self presentation, behavioural and non-behavioural.

b)      Effective authority styles compatible with personality.

3)      Stress analysisidentifying negative affect and its behavioural and environmental causes, including architecture and office layout. Training, coaching and change solutions.

4)      Training in body language (reading others, knowing and shaping yourself).

These services can only be delivered by trained professionals. Unfortunately ethology is not taught in departments of public administration or business studies, which severely restricts the supply of service providers. Little wonder that ethological services are yet to be packaged for the management market. The development of a full range of targeted ethological solutions must await the establishment of relevant courses across the disciplines that provide training that bears on management.

Cost of observational methods

Quantitative observational methods are costly.[20] A serviceable substitute is qualitative analysis performed by a trained organisational ethologist whose judgments compare well with quantitative analyses,[21] another reason to introduce ethology courses in business schools. Another way to reduce costs is for the ethologist to collaborate with the organisation’s human resources professional or other officer familiar with the organisation’s structures and personnel.

A useful introduction to the subject is to consider a particular behavioural aspect and how it affects work relations and can (or can’t) be managed for desirable ends. One such behaviour is eye contact (gaze). That is the subject of the next post.

Frank Salter


[1] PriceWaterhouse Coopers (2014). Report: Creating a mentally healthy workplace. Canberra, National Mental Health Commission, 20 March: 46 pp. Available at:

[2] Salter, F. K. (2008/1995). Emotions in command: Biology, bureaucracy, and cultural evolution. New York, Transaction.

[3] Stewart, P. A., F. K. Salter and M. Mehu (2010). The face as a focus of political communication: Evolutionary perspectives, experimental methods, and the ethological approach Sourcebook for political communication research: Methods, measures, and analytical techniques. E. P. Bucy and R. L. Holbert. New York and London, Routledge: 165-193.

[4] Patricia Karvelas (2014). Girls twice as likely to be mentally ill. The Australian, 18 June, p. 5.

[5] Maslow, A. (1940). “Dominance-quality and social behavior in infra-human primates.” Journal of Social Psychology 11: 313-324.

[6] White, R. E. and B. D. Pierce (2000). “On Maslow, monkeys, and evolution.” Academy of Management Review 25: 696-701.

[7] Jay, A. (1975/1971). Corporation man; who he is, what he does, why his ancient tribal impulses dominate the life of the modern corporation. Harmondsworth, Penguin.

[8] Bernhard, J. G. and K. Glantz (1992). Staying human in the organization: Our biological heritage and the workplace. Westport, CN, Praeger.

[9]Tiger, L. (1989/1969). Men in groups. New York and London, Marion Boyars.

[10] Tiger, L. and R. Fox (1989/1971). The imperial animal. New York, Henry Holt & Company.

[11] Milgram, S. (1974). Obedience to Authority. An Experimental View. New York, Harper & Row, pp. 23-5, 28-30.

[12] Pease, A. and B. Pease (2011). Body language in the work place, Pease International.

[13] Nicholson, N. (1998). “How hardwired is human behavior?” Harvard Business Review(July-August): 135-147. See the consulting website:

Nicholson, N. (2000). Executive instinct: Managing the human animal in the information age. New York, Random House.

[14] O’Keeffe, A. (2011). Hardwired humans: Successful leadership using human instincts. Sydney, Roundtable Press.

[15] Goleman, D., R. Boyatzis and A. McKee (2013). Primal leadership, with a new preface by the authors: Unleashing the power of emotional intelligence, Harvard Business Review.

[16] Pierce, B. D. and R. E. White (2006). “Resource context contestability and emergent social structure: An empirical investigation of an evolutionary theory.” Journal of Organizational Behavior 27: 221-239.

[17] Vugt, M. V., R. Hogan and R. B. Kaiser (2008). “Leadership, followship, and evolution.” American Psychologist 63(3): 182-196.

[18], accessed 16 July 2014.

Hogan, R. (2007). Personality and the fate of organizations. Mahway, NJ, Lawrence Erlbaum.

[19] Salter, F. K. (2008/1995). Emotions in command: Biology, bureaucracy, and cultural evolution. New York, Transaction, pp. 99-107.

[20] Quantitative analysis of the distribution of emotions in an organisation is most feasible for medium and large organisations using limited sampling of work groups.

[21] Part of the training is to judge which research questions are amenable to qualitative methods.

Ethology, Emotions and Organisations

In the last post I summarised a recent Report indicating that heightened negative emotions at work cause or exacerbate anxiety and depression that cost Australian businesses an estimated $10.9 billion annually.[i]  I noted that the behavioural-science discipline of ethology is especially suited to analysing emotions in organisations.

This post briefly outlines the behavioural science discipline of ethology and the more pertinent discipline of human ethology. It provides resources for further exploration of these subjects.

An inspiring introduction to ethology is a 2010 lecture by Robert Sapolsky[ii] at Stanford University. Sapolsky explains how ethology developed in the 1930s when animal psychology was dominated by behaviourism, a theory in which animals and humans are blank slates able to have any behaviour imposed upon them through reinforcement. Evidence for this consisted of experiments on caged rodents. In contrast, the early ethologists began by looking at animals in their natural environments, before experimenting to test various hypotheses. Sapolsky followed in this tradition in the 1980s and 1990s in his study of baboons in the wild. By measuring hormone levels he made important discoveries about how personality affects dominance and stress, at least in baboons.[iii]

Blank slate assumptions have persisted in Western social science, including management theory, despite being falsified scientifically many decades ago.[iv] The longevity of blank slatism in the social sciences is due to their rejecting biology after the 1940s.[v]

Modern ethology was pioneered from the 1930s to the 1950s by Nikko Tinbergen, Karl von Frisch and Konrad Lorenz, who jointly won the 1973 Nobel Prize. They were all from continental Europe, though Charles Darwin published a ground-breaking study of human emotions as early as 1872.

A theoretical innovation of the early ethologists was the concept of the “fixed action pattern”. Contrary to behaviourism, many behaviours are genetically programmed and emerge spontaneously in the developing organism, including humans. An example is human facial emotions. The six basic emotions emerge without learning in all human populations, and are then refined through social experience.[vi] The innateness of the emotions is demonstrated by studies of children born deaf and blind, who nevertheless show the basic emotions. The fact that foetuses smile before they are born makes a blank slate explanation for them highly implausible. The ethological study of humans grew from the foundations laid in studying animals. A leading textbook on the subject is by the Austrian ethologist Irenaeus Eibl-Eibesfeldt, titled simply Human Ethology.[vii]

Human ethology deploys the usual methods of social science research such as interview and questionnaire but also emphasises naturalistic observation and physiological measures. Naturalistic observation was greatly facilitated in quantity and quality by the movie camera and subsequently by low-cost video recording. Audio-visual recording is now a core method in the study of politics and organisations.[viii]

Also distinctive are ethological concepts, which are often drawn from animal studies. Even when studying behaviours closely associated with humans, such as speech, culture and religion, ethology adopts a biological and cross-species perspective. The result is theory that is universally applicable and which integrates non-verbal behaviour, psychology and physiology.

Its integrative character makes ethology especially useful for analysing the health effects of organisations. An example is research into interactions within organisations that links:

1)      Interactants’ rank;

2)      Whether the interaction is competitive or cooperative; and

3)      The emotions being express.

The original research conducated by Salter studied four basic emotions: happiness, anger, sadness and fear. Recent research led by American organisational ethologist Patrick Stewart included disgust, another basic emotion.[ix] The relationship between rank, type of interaction and emotion is shown in the following table. (Click to enlarge.)


Ethological theory allows organisations to be categorised according to the behavioural systems they engage to motivate subordinates. Three important behavioural concepts are reciprocity, dominance, and affiliation, interactions and relationships found in many species including humans. The following behavioural typology comes from Emotions in Command.[x]   (Click to enlarge.)

3-D typology-1

The typology is part of “infrastructure theory” which I developed in Emotions in Command. The theory conceives organisations as resting on the three behavioural systems named above – reciprocity, dominance, and affiliation. These involve motivational systems of the same name that are reliably associated with emotions. Work groups and whole organisations can be categorised according to the behavioural systems used to motivate employees.

One early realisation among ethologists was that humans are a cultural species par excellence who construct elements of their environment. Alone among the species, humans began devising techniques, culturally-transmissible techniques, for influencing their own behaviour. All human societies are based on culturally-transmitted rules, part of the “social technologies” we manufacture with the same brain that invented physical technologies of shelters, knives and digging sticks.

The study of social technologies has several origins, including the Machiavellian school of political philosophy, 19th century English liberal thinkers such as Jeremy Bentham and his pantechnicon, and most scientifically the European and American schools of ethology. I review the history of social technology theory in Emotions in Command (chapters 1 and 2).

This cultural component means that the ethological study of organisations is not focused solely on “body language” but also on the organisational environment, and interactions between them. Although members of organisations are seen as evolved organisms with a repertoire of innate behaviours, they inhabit the artificial environment of organisations conflicts can arise between innate predispositions and work conditions. The ethological perspective has contributed to the critique of formal organisations for their tendency to impose inhuman conditions, including rigid hierarchies and impersonal relationships. (Discussed in the next post.)

The ethological analysis of organisation has made several other findings. All directives have the same segments, beginning with gaining the attention of the subordinate and ending with monitoring of task performance. The segments are shown in the diagrams below, first without feedback and then with feedback.  (Click to enlarge.)



One hypothesis generated by the research is that all successful managerial systems work by elaborating one or more directive segments. In complex organizations specialised staff and sometimes whole departments function to attract attention, instruct in work skills or monitor performance. These findings confirm the ethological principle that an organism can only be communicated with using its evolved communication repertoire.

The next post summarises how ethology can assist the management of organisations.



[i] Pricewaterhouse Coopers (2014). Report: Creating a mentally healthy workplace. Canberra, National Mental Health Commission, 20 March: 46 pp. Available at:

[ii] Robert Sapolsky (2010). Ethology. Circa 60 minutes., accessed 28 May 2014.

[iii] Sapolsky, R. M. (1990). “Stress in the wild.” Scientific American 262(January): 106-113.

Sapolsky, R. M. (1991). “Testicular function, social rank and personality among wild baboons.” Psychoneuroendocrinology 16: 281-293.

[iv] Pinker, S. (2002). The blank slate: The modern denial of human nature. Viking.

[v] Salter, F. K. (2012). “The war against human nature in the social sciences.” Quadrant 56(6).

[vi] Recent research indicates that only four emotions are fixed action patterns. Jack, R. E., O. G. B. Garrod and P. G. Schyns (2014). “Dynamic Facial Expressions of Emotion Transmit an Evolving Hierarchy of Signals over Time.” Current Biology, accessed 1 April 2014. Discussed at:

[vii] Eibl-Eibesfeldt, I. (1989/1984). Human ethology. New York, Aldine de Gruyter.

[viii] Salter, F. K. (1996). “Drawn by light”: Visual recording methods in biopolitics. Research in biopolitics IV. A. Somit and S. A. Peterson. Greenwich, CN, JAI Press: 23-59.

[ix] Stewart, P. A., F. K. Salter and M. Mehu (2009). “Taking leaders at face value: Ethology and the analysis of televised leader display.” Politics and the Life Sciences 28(1): 48-74.

[x] Salter, F. K. (2008/1995). Emotions in command: Biology, bureaucracy, and cultural evolution. New York, Transaction, p. 454.

Mental Health, Emotions and Business Productivity

A recent high level Report makes a strong connection between emotional stressors at work and productivity. A consortium of researchers led by the consultancy Pricewaterhouse Coopers studied the impact of reduced mental health on absenteeism, presenteeism (underperforming at work), and workers’ compensation claims.[1] A headline finding is that every $1 invested in mental health returns $2.30 in saved costs. Poor mental health costs Australian business $10.9 billion annually.

Providing a mentally healthy workplace is a rational business investment. To bring this point home, the Report provides some statistics of the prevalence of mental health conditions.[2] Some remarkable facts are:

1)      In a 12-month period, 20% of Australians experience a mental health condition.

2)      45% of Australians in the age range 16-85 experience a mental health condition at some point in their lives.

The data came from the National Survey of Mental Health and Wellbeing conducted in 2007,[3] when the economy was still booming one year before the 2008 financial crisis. The survey reports high rates of conditions caused or exacerbated by stress, such as can occur at work. Mental illness is a “clinically diagnosable disorder that significantly interferes with an individual’s cognitive, emotional or social abilities”.[4] Milder conditions can also reduce productivity. Anything that reduces mental wellbeing, such as low morale, is likely increase costs.

It is worth identifying these disorders to better understand how they might be exacerbated or improved by workplace experiences.

Anxiety disorders affect 14.4% of Australians every year. These consist of:

  1. Panic disorder (2.6%)
  2. Agoraphobia (2.8%)
  3. Social phobia (4.7%)
  4. Generalised anxiety disorder (2.7%)
  5. Obsessive-compulsive disorder (1.9%)
  6. Post-traumatic stress disorder (6.4%)[5]


Of these, 1, 2, 3, 4, and 6 are sensitive to stressful emotional experiences. Most anxiety disorders are associated with feelings that can be induced in organisations: “tension, distress or nervousness”.[6]

Affective disorders affect 6.2% of Australians every year. These consist of:

  1. Depressive episode (4.1%)
  2. Dysthymia (chronic mild depression) (1.3%)
  3. Bipolar affective disorder (1.8%)[7]


All affective disorders are sensitive to negative emotional experiences – being triggered by them and contributing to them.

The Survey shows significant age and sex differences. The 25-34 age group suffered most mental health problems (18% per year). Women are especially vulnerable to anxiety disorders. In the age range 25-34 they show almost twice the frequency shown by men.[8] They are also more liable to affective disorders, except for the bipolar condition. In the age range 16-24, women show almost twice the prevalence of affective disorder shown by men. This disparity is confirmed by a study – the Youth Mental Health Report –of 15,000 young people aged 15 to 19 who completed the Kessler 6 Test for anxiety and depression. Indications of mental illness were reported by 14 per cent of males and 26 per cent of females.[9]

The Youth Report confirmed the connection between mental ill health and negative emotional experiences. Young people with an adverse Kessler 6 Test score are more likely to express concern about bullying, emotional abuse and family conflict.

Industries differ in prevalence and type of mental ill health. Overall prevalence is highest in the financial and insurance sector, where 33% of employees experiencing it per year. It is almost as prevalent in electricity, gas, water and waste services (EGWW, 31.6%) and information media and telecommunication (31.5%). Anxiety conditions are most common in the IT, media, financial and insurance, and EGWW sectors. Affective disorders (especially depression) are most prevalent in financial and insurance, IT, and EGWW industries. Full statistics on prevalence are provided in Appendix C of the Report.

Return on investment in mental wellbeing, if efficiently targeted, can be substantial. A 33% reduction in absenteeism, presenteeism and workers’ compensation across the country would yield the following returns. A person with a mild mental health condition will work 10 more productive hours per year, with a moderate condition 52.5 more productive hours and 2 fewer days absent per year, and with a severe condition 127.5 more productive hours and 13 fewer days absent per year.

Further return on investment can be expected from the higher morale that flows from mental wellbeing. The Report calls these benefits “intangibles” though group morale is a known positive indicator for raised productivity and, as argued in future posts, is measurable and predictable given the right analytic tools.

In summary, the data indicate that negative emotional experience is a major cause of lost mental wellbeing and therefore lost work productivity. Mental disorder can be brought into organisations and it can be caused or exacerbated by them. Either way, it lowers their productivity and reduces the wellbeing of the team. That is why a dollar spent on remedies returns, on average, $2.30.

Affordable solutions

The Report recommended “organisational change” to safeguard mental health, and identified seven actions for achieving this:

  1. Worksite physical activity programs;
  2. Coaching and mentoring programs;
  3. Mental health first aid and education;
  4. Resilience training;
  5. Cognitive behaviour therapy (CBT) based return-to-work programs;
  6. Well-being checks or health screenings;
  7. Encouraging employee involvement.


Actions 1, 3 and 7 can be used preventatively. Omitted from the list are two key preventative measures: analysing an organisation to identify patterns of negative emotions and stress; and, based on this analysis, making minimal changes to the organisation to reduce systemic negative affect. These measures are briefly indicated in the HeadsUp website (see below).

All of these actions can be costly and difficult to execute, especially the last two. Surveying, interviewing and observing staff costs time and disrupts work flow. Changing organisations also costs time and stress, and without a guiding theory and associated data-gathering methods might need to be repeated until the right constellation is hit upon.

Size of organisation and cost of investing in mental health

The need for efficient screening methods and valid theory is not as urgent when the incidence of mental health conditions is high. Remedial and preventative actions can yield strong returns on investment, even when those actions are not targeted. This is the case for small organisation in the EGWW and IT industries and for medium sized organisations in the public administration and safety, mining, and EGWW industries.

Return on investment is more variable in large organisations. It is high for public administration and safety and mining industries but more often low in other industries.[10] The Report does not offer an explanation for these low returns The Report does not suggest that large organisations are generally immune to mental health problems. On the contrary, it recommends remedial actions in large organisations based on decentralised monitoring and leadership of mental health programs.[11] Taken together, this part of the Report indicates an analytical deficit, perhaps originating in mainstream management theory. That impression is reinforced by the HeadsUp website’s vagueness on the subject. It states, without elaborating, that organisations can create a mentally healthy workplace by identifying and minimising workplace risks to mental health. And the website states that employers are legally required to provide a mentally safe and healthy workplace as part of their responsibilities under work health and safety legislation.[12] Again elaboration is not provided.

Perhaps large organisations with moderate mental health issues do not respond well to remedial efforts because their negative-affect hot spots and mental health conditions are not very detectable or predictable using existing methods and theories.

Cost-efficient prevention requires a theory of how organisations shape emotions. Such a theory would allow managers to predict where negative affect is likely to occur, focusing attention where it is most needed. And it would indicate the minimum organisational changes needed to reduce mental ill health.

Such an analysis was developed by Frank Salter in his book Emotions in Command: Biology, Bureaucracy, and Cultural Evolution (Transaction 2008). The analysis identifies causal links between authority and emotions, both positive and negative, in work organisations. The book also develops observational methods for analysing emotions in numerous work contexts.

The analysis is situated within the discipline of human ethology. Ethology is the biological study of behaviour, pioneered by scholars such as Charles Darwin, Konrad Lorenz, Demond Morris, Irenaeus Eibl-Eibesfeldt and Robert Hinde. The discipline overlaps urban anthropology and biopolitics.

Ethology is integrative, showing the connections between social relationship (e.g. leader-follower), physiology (e.g. stress and wellbeing), emotional expression and corresponding psychological experience (happiness, fear etc.). Emotions in Command shows that different organisations arouse different emotions but also distribute emotions in different patterns among employees. A fundamental finding is that organisations distribute emotions unevenly among leaders and followers.

Ethological analysis can identify stress risks and help design new structures and routines to reduce those risks. Observation of relevant behaviours is needed to identify structural and behavioural factors that raise the risk of conflict and stress, which in turn raises the incidence of mental health conditions. The theory also allows an analyst to use observational data to categorise organisations according to the types of behavioural systems used to manage employees. This categorisation provides some predictability of negative emotions and associated stress likely to be experienced.

The next posting outlines the discipline of ethology, followed by a post that sets out how ethological theory and methods can help detect emotional stressors and change organisations to reduce their effects.

Frank Salter




[1] Pricewaterhouse Coopers (2014). Report: Creating a mentally healthy workplace. Canberra, National Mental Health Commission, 20 March: 46 pp. Available at:

[2] PwC Report, p. v.

[3] ABS (2007). National Survey of Mental Health and Wellbeing: Summary of Results, Table 1, 23 October 2008,$File/43260_2007.pdf, accessed 28 May 2014.

[4] Survey of Mental Health, p. 4.

[5] Individuals can have more than one condition.

[6] Survey of Mental Health, p. 10.

[7] Individuals can have more than one condition.

[8] Survey of Mental Health, p. 9.

[9] The Report was prepared by the NSW Mental Health Commission. Patricia Karvelas (2014). Girls twice as likely to be mentally ill. The Australian, 18 June, p. 5.

[10] Detailed returns on investment in mental health are provided in the Report, Appendix E.

[11] Report, p. viii. Regarding large organisations’ low return on investment, the Report states that actions might need to be implemented on a team or group basis and engaging local “champions” to ensure that the investment “remains targeted amongst employees”.

[12], accessed 5 June 2014.

Advances in Reading Emotions

In January 2014 researchers at Glasgow University’s Institute of Neuroscience and Psychology questioned the long-held theory that human have six basic emotions.[1] Research scientists Rachael E. Jack, Oliver G. B. Garrod, and Philippe G. Schyns argued that children initially show four biologically-based emotions. With social experience they develop two more. The initial four instinctive emotional expressions are fear/surprise, sadness, happiness, and anger/disgust. Later surprise and disgust are signalled as separate emotions.

In this theory there are only four basic or innate emotions, not the usual six identified by psychologists.

In March 2014 other researchers developed an algorithm that allows computers to read human emotions, even complex ones formed by blending the primary facial expressions. Shichuan Du, Yong Tao, and Aleix M. Martinez at Ohio State University, went a long way to proving a theory originally developed by Austrian ethologist Konrad Lorenz, that facial expressions can be blended.[2]

The team had their computer code the facial expressions of 5,000 photographs of 230 people. The result was 15 compound emotions, including “sadly angry”, “fearfully surprised”, and “happily disgusted”. All are distinct blends of the basic six expressions. And all are formed by contractions of muscles in the face specialised for form the patterns we call emotional expressions.

These studies are the latest in a long series of exhaustive research stretching back to Charles Darwin’s ground breaking treatise, The Expression of the Emotions in Man and Animals, published in 1872.

Studies such as the two reviewed here bring the day closer when computers – personal computers – will be able to read the emotions of those using them. The new methods might also help diagnose and study such conditions as schizophrenia, autism and trauma.

However, computers are still not nearly as clever as children or even dogs, who are evolved to detect human emotions. By 18 months of age, toddlers can tell when an adult is faking a smile. Dogs are better judges of human emotions than are chimpanzees.

People are generally good at detecting emotions, though women are generally more adept than men. What we lack is a theory of social situations able to interpret our observations. Such a theory, to be reviewed in future posts, is needed to explain which emotions are aroused by which social situations.[3]

Frank Salter, 1st April 2014


[1] “Dynamic Facial Expressions of Emotion Transmit an Evolving Hierarchy of Signals over Time”, Current Biology., accessed 1 April 2014.

[2] “Compound facial expressions of emotion”, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (USA).

[3] Salter, F. K. (2008/1995). Emotions in command: Biology, bureaucracy, and cultural evolution. New York, Transaction.


Strong Ethnic Kinship Confirmed

A recent analysis by American geneticist Henry Harpending has confirmed his earlier finding that the genetic similarity of members of ethnic groups is typically that of first cousins.[1] (Genetic similarity is known as “kinship” in genetics.)

The finding has profound implications for understanding ethnic and racial solidarity and conflict. These implications will be discussed in future posts in HNN. The present report summarises the findings and the methods used to derive them.

The first estimation based on Harpending’s genetic model was made in 2002 using old genetic assay data provided by Cavalli-Sforza and colleagues, in their landmark book The History and Geography of Human Genes, published in 1994.[2]

The new estimation is based on a much larger database recently collected by the Human Genome Project. The new data are also much more accurate. Cavalli-Sforza’s gene tests looked at fewer than 100 sites in the genome. With improvements in technology, the new methods look at up to a million sites spread throughout the genome.

The figures show ethnic kinship in a mixed population of French and Japanese. A fellow ethnic has a kinship of around 0.06, which is just below that of first cousins within an ethnic group (0.065). Kinship with members of the other ethnic group is negative, also at 0.06. 

This makes an ethnic group a very large genetic kin group, but only when it interacts with other ethnic groups. Ethnic kinship is zero within homogeneous societies.

In an ethnically mixed society of French and Japanese, an ethnic group numbering one million carries 120,000 copies of each member’s genome. By comparison, a family of three children carries 1.5 copies of each parent’s genome.[3] If children represent parents’ “reproductive interests” or “genetic interests”, ethnic groups represent a much greater interest for their members. Genetically speaking, our ethnic families are 5 or 6 orders of magnitude larger than our nuclear families.

The emotions that so often mark ethnic affairs begin to make sense, even though they evolved in small scale societies with smaller genetic aggregates. Genetic survival is at stake in the welfare of our ethnic groups as it is in the welfare of our children.

This might seem simple, as if ethnic identity can be reduced to counting genes. That is not how the human mind works, a distinction that I will discuss in future posts. Suffice it that descent is what defines and motivates kinship systems. Members of an ethnic group believe that they share common ancestors, as well as sharing culture. This perceived kinship, expressed in folkloric metaphors such as “shared blood”, explains why ethnic motivation can be so strong. Knowledge of genetics might in principle substitute for folklore but has not been necessary for thousands of years. By and large, beliefs about ancestry are accurate, so that folkloric beliefs about ethnicity generally correspond to genetic identity. This contradicts the sociological theory that ethnicity and race are socially constructed with no role for biology.

A fuller explanation of the original findings and their social and political implications can be found in my book On Genetic Interests.[4] I shall discuss ethnic kinship again in Human Nature News.

Frank Salter, 31st March 2014


[1] Salter, F. K. and H. Harpending (2012). “J. P. Rushton’s theory of ethnic nepotism.” Personality and Individual Differences

Harpending, H. (2002). “Kinship and population subdivision.” Population and Environment 24(2): 141-147.

[2] Cavalli-Sforza, L. L., P. Menozzi and A. Piazza (1994). The history and geography of human genes. Princeton, New Jersey, Princeton University Press.

Salter, F. K. (2002). “Estimating ethnic genetic interests: Is it adaptive to resist replacement migration?” Population and Environment 24(2): 111-140.

[3] In an outbred population.

[4] Salter, F. K. (2007/2003). On genetic interests. Family, ethnicity, and humanity in an age of mass migration. New York, Transaction.

Parliamentary Passion

Unusual emotions were displayed last week in Federal Parliament. Moral emotions. We are used to anger, sneering, joviality, and copious amounts of straight-faced dull neutrality but not since ex-prime minister Julia Gillard’s speech in October 2012 when she accused Tony Abbott of misogyny have we seen such a display of righteous indignation.

The immediate cause was an Opposition censure motion directed at the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Bronwyn Bishop. Leader of Opposition Business, Tony Burke, accused Bishop of being incompetent, showing partiality, and acting as an “instrument of the Liberal Party”. The demeanour of both sides of the House and of Madam Speaker can be viewed during many interactions on

It was the alleged partiality towards the Government that aroused indignation. Why? Two hypotheses come to mind. Both were suggested in Parliament.

The first hypothesis is that the Speakerdid show partiality. The Opposition cited evidence for this, often as running commentary on the Speaker’s behaviour. For example, at one point Opposition frontbencher Tony Burke protested to the Speaker that she had expelled an Opposition member unfairly. Paraphrasing: “You asked her whether she wanted to leave the House, and when she replied you expelled her!” Other evidence cited is that Bishop had expelled 99 Opposition MPs but no Government MP, a greater than usual ratio. Also, she continues to attend Government party room meetings, breaking a tradition of speakers standing down from such party duties.

The second hypothesis is gamesmanship by the Opposition. The Leader of the Government Business, Christopher Pyne, implied that the Opposition was not genuine in its criticism of the Speaker. He stated that this was a “stunt”, a form of gamesmanship. Evidence for this interpretation is that Tony Burke likened Bronwyn Bishop to a villainous English headmistress on her first day as Speaker.

The Opposition might have felt emboldened to attack the Speaker because of their intuition that she lacked authority with their constituents. They might have felt that the mud would stick – not because she was being grossly unfair but because her peremptory manner was readily interpretable as such, especially for some Labor loyalists.

Characteristics of Bronwyn Bishop fit this interpretation. Bronwyn Bishop is an upper class Anglo lady. Given that the Labor Party is experienced at playing identity politics it is not unreasonable to suppose that they judge her class, ethnicity and sex to be red rags to some Labor voters. From this perspective, baiting the Speaker might be seen as a tactic that will pay dividends, much like Julia Gillard’s attack on Tony Abbott’s “misogyny” was meant to elicit sympathy from women.

Without a formal comparative study this observer cannot test these hypotheses.

But both hypotheses reflect on the wisdom of the Westminster tradition. Whether the Speaker was guilty as charged or the Opposition unfairly accused her of partiality in order to undermine her authority, impartiality is prescribed in that tradition and for very good reasons.[1]

Parliaments dispense great wealth and power that affect the lives of millions. It is therefore not surprising that contests for advantage within them can become heated. Members of those parliaments are usually people of talent and energy, capable of holding their own in debate and intellectual contest. Regulating their debates requires not only skill but power. But a parliament is not a dictatorship or a politbureau or a corporate board. In a democracy parliament must be self-governing within the constitutional frame, able to censure a government that has lost support, able to eject an MP who is disruptive, able to call an election that replaces the government.

Parliaments in the Westminster tradition appoint their own speakers whose authority relies on receiving continuing support from the parliament. Speakers are appointed by governments and can continue in power despite unpopularity if the government so wishes. But speakers who rely on coercion often rule over unruly houses. The most productive parliaments are managed by speakers who are respected for their fairness. That depends on them enforcing rules in an impartial manner. That is why in making their criticisms the Opposition displayed moral emotions, instead of the usual mix. They were asserting not that the Speaker lacked power but fairness and the legitimacy and trust that brings.

[1] Salter, F. K. (2008/1995). Emotions in command: Biology, bureaucracy, and cultural evolution. New Brunswick, Transaction Publishers. Chapter 8: “Chairmen’s command of meeting procedure: The challenge of aggression”.