Thoughts from an Army guy about a Navy paper on keeping a weather eye on the horizon:
1) Can an “idea nation” which is what we purport ourselves to be, really work? My take on that is, it _can_ up to a certain point – the “nation” part – at least in terms of a central, unifying idea and culture, is essential to that, and that has never been as solid in this country as we wanted it to be – we were moving in this direction, I think, between the end of WWI and the end of the ‘60s, but I think we’ve been disaggregating ever since.
2) other studies show that as you increase diversity, you decrease social cohesion – there’s no magic policy solution that optimizes both – if I were to take a hard-core, cynical, historical view of it, I would agree with other people’s assessment that diversity + proximity = war. But, my amendment to that is, “… = war, when the following conditions are met: 1) instead of having a diverse society (one where you have a strong majority with minorities which are able to exercise their rights in peace and collaboration with the majority), you have competing social-ethnic-linguistic-cultural-economic entities (a “black nation,” an “Arab nation,” a “white nation” inside the borders), 2) you transition from nation-state, to state-nation, to empire (as in, a hegemonic suzerain that maintains military and political control over disparate nations), 3) the authority of the imperial center weakens significantly, 4) outside pressures increase competition.
3) We don’t have “diversity” any more in this country – not the way the HR hucksters, SWPLs and grievance mongers describe it, or that the brochures they beat us over the head with describe it – that idea of diversity is what most people seem to think it is – access to more restaurants. Real ethnic, racial, and cultural diversity! Sure! Everyone loves it…so long as it actually LIVES in someone else’s neighborhood.
We don’t have a diverse country, we have a collection of slowly evolving, competing tribal, ethnic, linguistic, and cultural, and racial communities – people are sorting themselves, and older loyalties are trumping our idea-driven, Constitution-based, “Murica Uber Alles” identity.
4) Tribalism is the default state of humanity – a lot of what today gets lumped in with “racism” and “ethnocentrism” should be more accurately called “tribalism.” Racism exists, but racism and tribalism are not synonyms, it’s the same way people now conflate “patriotism” with “nationalism” and even those with “fascism.”
5) tribalism CAN come to mean “racialism” – when competing loyalties start coming into play. If American whites really start to fear for their own safety and security, because even SWPLs might start to believe that it’s not likely that being the one white family in an all black neighborhood is going to equate to acceptance, race might start to trump political and social affinity, even for liberals. I think there are really those who expect to be treated like gods – i.e., showered with thanks and gratitude, because they “helped uplift” minorities , women, and gays – well this is pretty bigoted and condescending in and of itself, because it carries the notion that “you couldn’t have done it without me, you OWE ME” as well as “I betrayed my own kind for you!” – neither scenario has tended to work out well in history.
6) A lot of people – left, right, in between, like to focus on the US military as an example of “diversity done right” – and there’s some legitimate arguments you can make to support that, but also I think it reveals why you can’t use the US military as a model for an entire, ideal society. First, the US military has its own tribal identity, and it’s especially powerful – more powerful than many other tribal identities in this country, especially when you take into account the all volunteer force. There’s a definite “us versus them” divide with regard to civilians, even in the Guard and Reserve, who are much less isolated, generally, than active duty forces and civilian society are from each other.
– Even still, the Pentagon’s version of “diversity” is based on flawed perception. When you go into the Pentagon, one of the things you’ll see is this massive food court – it looks like a college student union more than anything, and if you took it on face value, you’d think you’d died and gone to Star Trek / USS Voyager / Diversity Heaven. GO’s even throw around phrases like “operationalizing diversity” (I still have no idea what that means. None.) But the Food Court is the the single-most ethnically, sexually (both gender and orientation), handicap-able/disability, racially, diverse place I have ever seen, in my life. If you were a unit’s EO rep, your eyes would just water at the sight. Everyone gets along, everyone has a job to do, it looks beautiful… People still sort themselves, but the tribal military identities seem to trump the others…
– There’s just one HUGE problem. The field (forces, at their installations all over the world), generally, do not look like that. No place I’ve ever been looks like the Food Court in the Pentagon. Maybe some college campuses, and we see how happy and friendly they are these days don’t we?
Also, I get to see the suicide stats – the only demographic trends in common – this year and last – Overwhelmingly white males. Many are non-custodial divorced parents, and yet, there’s no white male-single father outreach program. If there is a single determining risk category in the armed services for suicide, white males of all ages have the market cornered. And yet we get plenty of convoluted discussion of how “diversity is a part of spiritual resiliency.” It’s all sentimentality and sweetness, and absolutely zero substance.
So yeah, I’m a fatalist too – I think our future is balkanization and separatism here in the US – maybe not tomorrow, maybe not this century. Does it HAVE to happen, no I don’t think it’s predetermined, but the trends aren’t pretty.
The thing that I find amazing is that although I am a multiracial, multilingual individual who has lived on three separate continents, both liberal and conservative monolingual whites who have never spent more than 10 days in outside the USA completely disregard my warnings about the inevitable failure of diversity, multiculturalism, and equalitarian dogma within it. This is despite the fact that they are appalled by me and my conclusions alike and I am about the closest representation to their future ideal as exists in the world today.
UTOPIAN: The future is with our robots and it will be wonderful!
PROTOTYPE ROBOT: WE WILL EXTERMINATE YOU ALL AMIDST BLOOD AND FIRE.
UTOPIAN: What do you know about it, you sexy racy humanophobe?
The ironic thing is that in that diverse Pentagon food court, as with the average university student union, most of the diverse population eats there in self-segregated groups.