Wednesday, January 04, 2006
It's the Demography, Stupid
The real reason the West is in danger of extinction.
BY MARK STEYN
Most people reading this have strong stomachs, so let me lay it out as baldly as I can: Much of what we loosely call the Western world will not survive this century, and much of it will effectively disappear within our lifetimes, including many if not most Western European countries. There'll probably still be a geographical area on the map marked as Italy or the Netherlands--probably--just as in Istanbul there's still a building called St. Sophia's Cathedral. But it's not a cathedral; it's merely a designation for a piece of real estate. Likewise, Italy and the Netherlands will merely be designations for real estate. The challenge for those who reckon Western civilization is on balance better than the alternatives is to figure out a way to save at least some parts of the West.
One obstacle to doing that is that, in the typical election campaign in your advanced industrial democracy, the political platforms of at least one party in the United States and pretty much all parties in the rest of the West are largely about what one would call the secondary impulses of society--government health care, government day care (which Canada's thinking of introducing), government paternity leave (which Britain's just introduced). We've prioritized the secondary impulse over the primary ones: national defense, family, faith and, most basic of all, reproductive activity--"Go forth and multiply," because if you don't you won't be able to afford all those secondary-impulse issues, like cradle-to-grave welfare.
Americans sometimes don't understand how far gone most of the rest of the developed world is down this path: In the Canadian and most Continental cabinets, the defense ministry is somewhere an ambitious politician passes through on his way up to important jobs like the health department. I don't think Don Rumsfeld would regard it as a promotion if he were moved to Health and Human Services.
The design flaw of the secular social-democratic state is that it requires a religious-society birthrate to sustain it. Post-Christian hyperrationalism is, in the objective sense, a lot less rational than Catholicism or Mormonism. Indeed, in its reliance on immigration to ensure its future, the European Union has adopted a 21st-century variation on the strategy of the Shakers, who were forbidden from reproducing and thus could increase their numbers only by conversion. The problem is that secondary-impulse societies mistake their weaknesses for strengths--or, at any rate, virtues--and that's why they're proving so feeble at dealing with a primal force like Islam
Steyn is so on with this.
His point is we are multicultural-ing ourselves to death. We are so "caring" about "balance" and appearing multicultural (without REALLY know anything about any other culture, mind you... including our own) that we are dooming our own culture to obselescense. That we have become so self-absorbed that we don't even care about having children. That we are so involved in our minutia that the enemy of modernity will walk right in and give us a killing blow without us even realizing it is happening.
Religious cultures place a high value on children, even the Islamofascists as they care more about males, than societies that center their thoughts and desires solely on the individual as leftist Europe and blue America is proving statistically.
That is why all you anti-Americans on the left probably won't really be a bother in the long run. You are either gay or so self-involved that you will eschew children to pursue your selfish interests like perpetual adolescents and will not pass on your idiotic pseudo values on to the next generation. The Christians you all hate so much will win out in the long run.
But because of you selfish, adolescent liberals, the Muslims will over take us all because they, like the Christians, will have a lot of children. but, unlike the Christians, they will pass on a hatred for the west to those children.
So, the destruction of western values can be laid at the feet of leftists even more so than at the feet of Islamofascists.
And in that, Steyn is 100% right.