Tribalism

Yemenis belonging to the Bagefer tribe attend a wedding ceremony at Wadi Lesser in Hadramout

Toothache?

Something today started me thinking about tribalism and whatever its opposite is – maybe ‘a disinterested sense of fairness for everybody’. Tribalism is clearly what people in the modern world have tried to move away from, while the non-modern world is still largely ruled by it. Privileging you and yours makes life pretty simple since it’s what we do naturally. In essence it is just love-of-self writ large, and there’s no shame in that. If we didn’t have that, we would have no basis on which to act. Any creature that is indifferent to itself will quickly eliminate itself from the gene pool.

Opposed to tribalism, we have the attempt in the modern world to consider ‘the other’ as of equal importance to us and to find some way to navigate between our natural self-interest and our learned concern for people we have never met and who may sometimes hate us. Of course, no one expects anyone to be completely unpartisan. If you have the choice between saving your own child or a child on the other side of the world, no father would be expected to choose the latter. He would be considered a moral monster if he did so. Parental preference for your own offspring is a fact of life and not something that needs to be justified by reason.

However, the same father would be thought immoral if he were willing to tolerate the deaths of thousands, just to avoid cutting the little finger of his child. Somewhere in the middle lies a reasonable position. The problem is finding that position while at the same time dealing with people who couldn’t care less about reasonableness.

I am slowly coming to the conclusion that people who don’t feel any loyalty to their own tribe (liberal westerners in the main) are condemning their tribe to extinction and are on very shaky ground when it comes to deciding how to live. They no longer feel that tradition has any place in deciding how we live.

Even so, tradition helps to shape our lives without each successive generation having to re-think its actions from first principles. Instead we just carry on as we have done for centuries, while all the time adapting whenever necessary to new technologies and ideas.

Of course, you must sometimes go against tradition when attitudes have changed so much that it is seen as harmful and against our morals to continue in the same direction. It was right that we abolished the tradition of slavery in the 19th century.

Even so, I like the idea of the power of tradition. I remember one of my female Japanese students telling me several years ago that she liked wearing her kimono because she felt more in touch with her ancestors. That is what I feel tradition should do. It’s an antidote to the atomized feeling that many people have today, as though they had suddenly fallen to earth from nowhere, with no sense of where they came from and no knowledge of history by which to orientate themselves.

Some liberals are prepared to defend their political affiliations, usually democracy, but never their race. They would find it barbarous to do so. If such people are to be taken seriously there would be nothing to regret if the whole population of Britain were substituted wholesale for the population of say, Pakistan, just as long as the political structure remained intact. To such people, the demographics of Europe, which show a steady and rapid decline in the native population and an equally steady and rapid increase in people from the third world, is a matter of supreme indifference. Anything other than indifference must be racism.

But for me it is not a matter of indifference. I feel that the history of Britain is the story of a core of people which has remained basically the same for many centuries, although it has been augmented by people from other countries over those centuries. The largest of these in modern times was the flow of Huguenots into Britain over a period of about 50 years in the 18th century, which saw the arrival of about 50,000 people. These were people who were generally well-educated, financially self-supporting and who brought important new trades and skills to Britain.

This is something totally different from the mass immigration we are now seeing where the number of immigrants entering Britain each year is the same as the whole number of Huguenots that arrived over the course of half a century. These new immigrants often aren’t financially well off and so often have to be supported. They generally don’t bring any new skills and are often poorly educated.

The same goes not only for Britain but for many European countries. By the end of this century, the native populations of many European countries will find themselves in a minority. This is partly due to the fact that immigrants from the Third World have a higher fertility rate, something made possible by a generous welfare system, without which they wouldn’t be able to afford such large families. It is also due to ‘white flight’, the phenomenon that sees many native Europeans emigrating to America, Canada, Australia and New Zealand because they no longer feel their country is their own.

Regardless of what politically correct people say, all of us want to be surrounded by people like ourselves. That’s how we choose our friends. Yet the government, multi-culturalists and multi-racialists parrot the phrase that diversity is good for us. However, the truth is that we rarely want diversity in our own lives. I simply don’t have friends who think that Ganesh the elephant-god created the world. I want my friends to be the same as me. And there is little doubt that the more diversity a society has, the more fault lines there are along which conflict tends to erupt. This is almost certainly one of the reasons why there is so little social conflict in Japan: the population is homogeneous, religion is practised as a tradition and not as a means to the truth, and Japan remains largely a mono-culture. There is very little racial, religious or cultural diversity and consequently there are fewer fault lines.

So this is not simply a rant for the British Freedom Party. I feel the same way about Japan. I love Japan and I believe that something important would be lost if the Japanese people were replaced over the span of a couple of generations by another tribe through mass immigration. And I don’t think a Japanese person who wants to keep Japan Japanese is a racist, not do I think a British person need feel guilty for wanting immigrants to remain a manageable minority.

There is no shame in wanting your tribe to flourish. This is an idea that all societies have taken for granted – until now. Suddenly in the West we are being made to feel guilty for saying aloud that mass immigration is bad. This is a strange state of affairs.

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