Why are the people thus busily moving?
For food they are seeking, children they fain would beget, feeding them all as they can.
Traveler, mark this well, and when thou art home, do thou likewise!
More can no mortal effect, work with what ardor he will.
(Johann W. von Goethe, 1790)
With the decline of Europe during the Great War, the multiethnic USA survived as the only counterweight to the overwhelmingly racially homogeneous countries of the East: China was 92 percent ethnic Han, Nippon was 99 percent ethnic Japanese, and Korea was 99 percent ethnic Korean. Meanwhile, the (coherently perceived) Muslim world, the Hindu world, and the Soviet empire together comprised over two billion people. During the next few decades of reconstructing Europe, all major Eastern cultures, often driven by political utopian dreams, increased their populations so dramatically as if to prove Thomas Malthus (1766-1834) wrong:
The massive population of China is our greatest good. Even a further increase of several times the population is entirely possible, possible through productivity.
(Mao Zedong, 1960, Vol. 4)
Thomas Malthus, an English philosopher, made his famous prediction in “An Essay on the Principle of Population” (1798) that population growth would at some point in time outrun food supply, and hence that the world population must have a maximum limit of between nine to twelve billion. Naturally, until that final limit is reached, some nations would try, almost fanatically as in the case of Maoist China until the early 80’s, or not try at all, as in case of post-war Germany after the 50’s, which officially discouraged children, to outperform each other – for instance by forbidding contraception, ruling out gay communions, encouraging matchmaking, rewarding ‘patriotic’ baby-making, or discouraging women from joining the labor force (Heinsohn, 2003 ). Japan’s population increased from 60 to 127 million, India from 550 to 1100 million, China exploded in population from 600 to over one billion and 350 million, the citizens of the Soviet Union grew from 100 million to 450 million (by annexation), and finally the entire Arab/Moslem population almost tripled to one billion 400 million (with Indonesia from 75 to 220 million, Pakistan from 39 to 167 million etc.) (GeoHive, 2008; CIA Factbook, 2008).
As I write this paper, the populations of China and India have each increased by 20 million in the past 18 months, close to the size of that of Australia. That is of course a far cry from back in the year 2000, when China reported 36 million ‘millennium babies’ (China Daily, 2012/02/01). By modern European standards, such figures are utopian and utterly mind-boggling. And it does not stop here: In 2007, in just one of its 22 provinces, namely in Henan, China saw a birthrate of roughly 1.2 million Chinese babies, some 500,000 more than entire Germany in that same year – however, 28 percent of the ‘German babies’ were of non-German ethnic descent (destasis, 2006). Tens of thousand million babies is a post-modern sin, even for a proud and wise civilization like China. So, Henan’s local authorities, in order to counter their outrageously high birthrate of 1.6 million annually during the 90’s, had to promise Beijing not to exceed the province’s projected population of 110 million before the year 2020 (China Daily, 2008/04/20). Hurray to that! To put this into perspective: During the Olympic Year in Beijing in 2008, 20 million Chinese were born in mainland China. And this, despite the ‘one-child policy’ from 1979, although heavily relaxed, still being in place (there are many exceptions to the policy, and minorities and rich folks are exempted anyway, but we won’t go into that here). Growing at this rate, the world’s entire World War II casualties (roughly 72 million people, including all casualties of famine!) are replaced by China alone in a little under four years. Add the babies from India, Pakistan, and Bangladesh, and the World War II losses are remedied in just under 18 months. In this context, Darwin’s words sound ironic:
In this case we can clearly see that if we wished in imagination to give the plant the power of increasing in number, we should have to give it some advantage over its competitors. (Charles Darwin, 1859 )
However, in the short run between the years 1950 and 2000, the doctrine of Darwin (and, in politics, Marx) had disappointed the people, and so did the practice of Social Darwinism as a nominal imperative: Numbers (and mind you, it is always about numbers!) of citizens did not immediately translate into global dominance. Something rather counterintuitive happened, as the believed outcome of the struggle for survival against the West failed to materialize:
If two great regions had been for a long period favorably circumstanced in an equal degree, the battle would be prolonged and severe; […]. But in the course of time, the forms dominant in the highest degree, wherever produced, would tend everywhere to prevail. As they prevailed, they would cause the extinction of other and inferior forms, […]. (Charles Darwin, 1859 )
What Darwin had anticipated for the plants and animal kingdom, namely that biological mass or discipline (instinct) of a group leads to victory, seemed technically absurd: Although the Caucasian population in the USA, Great Britain, Germany, and France declined in relation to most other great Asian nations, these countries assimilated quite well the mass migration from East to West. On the contrary, the West was able to profit from its newly won diversity, calling it ‘multiculturalism,’ the only ‘minor’ problem being that of successful integration: Already in the year 2007, in Amsterdam, the capital of The Netherlands, almost 40 percent of its 750,000 inhabitants were ethnic minorities, and 60 percent of children in primary schools were of non-Dutch descent. The influx of Asians, and also of Eastern Europeans and Africans, had made a great impact on the USA, the European Union, Canada, Australia, and other Western countries, which also led to pressure as these immigrants often have more children than the domestic populations (Heinsohn, 2005).
Soon, critics were wielding clichés such as ‘moral conquerors’ and ‘spiritual invasion’ (Freytag, 1940; 2004), ‘Counter-Colonialism,’ ‘the Gradual Orientalization of the Western Culture’ and ‘Pacific Century,’ meaning that the twenty-first century will be dominated by the Pacific Rim states, including China, Japan, and the USA (Gibney, 1992; PBS, 1993; Borthwick, 1998), ‘The Chinese Enlightenment of the West,’ ‘Eastern takeover’ or ‘Clash of Civilizations’ (Huntington, 1993; 2000; 2004). All these notions, supported by popular academic data, suggest that conformist East Asians and individualistic Westerners – apart from having shaped two entirely different civilizations, one induction-based, the other deduction-based – indeed seem to produce different general cognitive styles too. The latter tend to reason more analytically, the former tend to reason more holistically (Masuda & Nisbett, 2001).
The demographic changes in Europe are irreversible, and the former feelings of Western superiority – the analytical mind, the linear approach to time and history, the soul of the conqueror, the deductive ways – over time will proportionally decrease in favor of a newly felt Eastern superiority – the intuitive mind, the holistic approach to time, the non-Western experience of history, the soul of the sage, the inductive ways.
As a matter of perception, till today, the Western ways are universally associated with ‘war’, ‘aggression,’ and ‘exclusiveness,’ while the Eastern ways are associated with ‘peace,’ ‘tranquility,’ and ‘inclusiveness’ – notwithstanding both hemispheres showing the tendencies to project their own psychological outlook onto the other. For the vast majority of Americans and Europeans, Asia is a place for all those fanatics, dictators, terrorists, and immature cultures. For the Asians, the West – despite its cruelties and flaws – is often seen as the savior who brings stability, happiness, and peace to the world.
As a consequence of ‘psychological projection,’ the West does not clearly see its own vices, and the East does not clearly see its own virtues.
Due to current demographic developments, Europe is going to change and will have to accept more of the Eastern inductive ways. Or does it? It will take some time, to say the least. The non-integrated, non-secular Muslims in Germany, Austria, and The Netherlands still feel they are second-class citizens: As a minority, they are not alone in Europe (Times, 2008/07/27; taz, 2008/02/12). In Great Britain, France, Spain, and Italy, too, most of their Muslim, Asian or East Asian counterparts (may they be Turks, Algerians, Chinese, Sikhs etc., who will anyway represent 53 percent of the European population in the year 2100) still report they are having a hard time adjusting to the – from their perspective – very limited way of Western thinking. Many Eastern immigrants, including most Europeans themselves, believe that European culture has killed the Indians, developed slavery, colonized and exploited the Third World, brought war and misery to the human cause, and should thus disappear from the surface of the Earth, obviously not by war, but by silent assimilation. In Berlin, it is not uncommon for a white German woman to be labeled ‘snobbish’ or even plain ‘racist’ just because she chooses a white German partner, instead of showing her ‘tolerance’ by choosing a non-white spouse. It has become, in the language of the youth, “hip” in Europe to “go non-white.”
The new spiritual conquerors, with their Eastern religions, values, and world views, as well as their inductive ways are demanding more power and influence in their host countries of choice, and they are lobbied by approximately three billion other Indians, Chinese, Muslims, South-East Asians etc. While Europe and North America are volunteering to ‘transform’ their indigenous cultures, China, India, Singapore, Hong Kong, and others are all happy to assimilate those few (relative in number) ‘Western runners.’ Westerners hardly ever call themselves immigrants; they prefer the exclusive, high-status term ‘expatriates’ or ‘expats’ while abroad who turn their backs on their deconstructed, apparently moribund civilization, and search for refuge in the strong and massive Eastern hemisphere. But, alas, despite finding themselves admired and useful due to their deductive, analytical ways and deconstructive skills, as lone individuals they have an impact no less but also no greater than a water drop in the vast sea of Eastern inclusive ‘harmoniousness’ and universal ‘oneness.’
In the short run, the few young indigenous Europeans who have not yet immigrated into the Anglo-Saxon world (Heinsohn, 2003; Breithaupt, 2000) or found some purpose in the East, will stay on their home turf and indeed benefit from their continent’s accumulated wealth, with fewer and fewer people sharing that wealth. In the long term, however, their parents, companies, and governments will have to make a painful but crucial financial decision:
There is nothing complicated about finance. It is based on old people lending to young people. […]. Never before in human history, though, has a new generation simply failed to appear. (David P. Goldman, 2008/05)
The aging Europeans’ search for their ‘next generation,’ may it be citizens for their cities, tenants for their houses, consumers, students, employees, spouses, or just new ideas, has already begun – they look to the East.
Whoever said that “victory makes you liberal while defeat makes you conservative” must have had an in-depth understanding of the laws of sociology. The Europeans in the twenty-first century are suffering from low birth rates, defenselessness, and dependency, and thus have developed a pervasive fear of everything Asian. Does this new twenty-first century existential angst resemble that old twentieth-century existential angst, so accurately portrayed in images of the “Yellow Terror” such as Wilhelm II.’s painting Völker Europas, Wahrt Eure Heiligsten Güter (People of Europe, Safeguard Your Most Valuable Goods), which depicts the European nations standing on a cliff guarding against a mighty Buddha and his thunderstorm (Wikipedia, 2008)? Or as exemplified by the short stories written at the end of the nineteenth century by Matthew Phipps Shiel, who brutally familiarized Westerners with the term The Yellow Peril? How about the fear of Islamic Extremists? Or the fear of mass immigration out of Africa and the Middle East? Is there anything in this century that Europeans are not afraid of? Does this new twenty-first century existential angst resemble the old pessimism of an Oswald Spengler or an Arnold Toynbee, both of whom summarized angst in their The Decline of the West (1918) and Civilization on Trial and the World and the West (1958)? How about the paranoid ‘angst’ of a Willhelm Marr in his Finis Germaniae, a manifesto about the decline of the Germanic race(s) to which also the Anglo-Saxons belong (Marr, 1879; Heihnson, 2006; Fülberth, 2007). If angst still reigns over Europe, it comes as no surprise that the Christian Democratic Union and the Christian Social Union of Bavaria in Germany have published their “Asia-Strategy Paper” (October 23, 2007), which officially labels China a “threat to European values, economic and political development” (Schröder, 2008; Spiegel, 2008/07/15). Is that paper reflecting mere diplomatic foolishness, the insecurity of its authors, or does it just smell like honest, genuine fear? Presumably, it is a bit of all and shows that Germany is spiritually on the retreat. She is not prepared to compromise her Western values, despite the fact that 98 percent of humankind is not German, would not want to join Germany or be labeled German, and already regards the Chinese as Europe’s valuable economic and political partners, not as a threat. But the above example gives us an idea of the ‘psychology of failure’ (in this case, two world wars) and the wish to stand up for something meaningful again, in this case for ‘Western values,’ while at the same time discrediting or even denying such a thing as ‘Asian values.’ That this entails rendering all non-Western societies as inferior or immature, does not and will never come naturally to Germany’s cultural mind, if you recall European history – and especially eighteenth-, nineteenth-, and twentieth-century German Orientalism (Marchand, 2001). Anything close to a ‘revolution of the spirit,’ a change of attitude towards China on the part of Germany (or any other European society for that matter), must come first and foremost from within the heart. In this case, it comes from the blending of Eastern and Western spirits that slowly sink into the hearts and minds of the European people. In reality it’s all happening through the physical migration of more and more Easterners into the European heartland.
In the latter half of the twentieth century and in this century, the new spiritual strength of the integration-based Orient, derived from the explosion in population, manifested itself in a new self-confidence and assertiveness and the re-affirmation of (superior) Asian values and pan-Asianism, the old notion that Asia indeed is the unifying ‘one,’ while the West is the destructive ‘other’:
[…] that broad expanse of love for the Ultimate and Universal, which is the common thought-inheritance of every Asiatic race, enabling them to produce all the great religions of the world, and distinguishing them from those maritime peoples of the Mediterranean and the Baltic, who love to dwell on the Particular, and to search out the means, not the end, of life. (Okakura Kakuzo, 1904)
[…] no description of Hinduism can be exhaustive which does not touch on almost every religious and philosophical idea that the world has ever known…
(M. Monier Williams, 1894)
[…] It is all-tolerant, all-compliant, all-comprehensive, all-absorbing. (S. Radhakrishnan, 1929)
[…] European culture has the ability to master energy and mechanics, but has only elementary knowledge regarding the human body and the concert of mind and brain. The Middle and the Far East (however) have an advance of thousand years on the West. (Claude Lévi-Strauss, 1952)
The modern idea of ‘pan-Asianism’ and the slogan “Asia is one” were first discussed in Okakura Kakuzo’s groundbreaking book The Ideals of the East (1904), but became really popular again in the nineties during the academic discourse on ‘Asian values’: ‘Asian values’ is a vague concept of certain religious and spiritual tendencies, traditions, and virtues like filial piety, love of learning, collectivism, and inner-world dependency that are shared by most Asian (some say only Confucian) cultures, but are not – or not equally – stressed in most Western societies (Han, 1998). By definition, Asian values form a self-affirming psychological counterpoise, and thus conflict with those Western values of Judeo-Christian historical revelations, liberalism, individualism, and dependency on the outer world.
Another major blow to Western hubris was the genetic challenge. According to The Wall Street Journal, “American-Asian minorities make up three point five percent of the country’s population, but they account for more than twenty to thirty percent of students in America’s top universities” (Golden, 2006; 2011), and since the 1920’s, the beginnings of research on race differences, it has been known, and has been proven independently by psychologists such as Jean Philippe Rushton and Arthur Robert Jensen (2006), Richard Herrnstein and Charles Murray (1994), James Robert Flynn (1980; 1994), and Ian Deary (2001), among others, that East Asians on average do score six to seven points higher than Anglo-Americans, and 20 points higher than Afro-Americans on most (Western-) standardized intelligence tests (Rushton et. al., 2006; Herrnstein et. al., 1994; Flynn, 1980, 1994; Deary, 2001; Steinberg, 1994). This is readily available science; no one is in the dark any longer. Indeed, the cognitive preeminence of East Asians in several intellectual and artistic disciplines is as fascinating and terrifying to look at as, for instance, watching the awesome dominance of Afro-American basketball players in the National Basketball Association (Flynn, 1994; Ledderose, 2005).
When we combine the high test results of East Asians with student numbers, we get even more impressive results: In the year 2005, China, still offically a developing country, announced it had 19 million undergraduate and graduate students enrolled on the mainland, without Hong Kong and Taiwan (CNET, 2005/08/30). Great Britain, in the same year, had hardly 2.3 million students, of whom 300,000 were foreign nationals, over 51,000 of them ethnic Chinese (BBC, 2007/03/27).
The cultural and economic penalty for not recognizing Asian talent is immense, and it therefore comes as no surprise that in this century, we have witnessed in particular the Anglophone world recruiting Chinese and Indian students in unprecedented numbers. In the year 2005, 65,000 Chinese and 75,000 Indians studied in the USA; and 60,000 Chinese and 20,000 Indians in Great Britain (IIE, 2006; People’s Daily, 2006/04/05). In the record year of 2012, it was estimated that 157,558 Chinese students attended school in the USA (Mellman, 2012). By comparison, when we look at American students studying in China, that number had barely reached 14,000 this year (Siow, 2012), many of whom are American-Chinese or ‘hai gui’ (海龟, sea turtles). With this trend of recruiting more Asian talent came ‘political correctness’ and the need to talk about differences in culture and cultural values (e.g. Fukuyama, Huntington etc.), rather than differences in race and phenotypes (e.g. Herrnstein, Flynn etc.):
Genetic differences among individual human beings account for up to eighty-five percent of the entire genetic spectrum, while the genetic differences in the world population are only about fifteen percent. No matter which ethnic group you come from, we’re all pretty much the same. (Jin Li [金力], 2006)
To conclude, in discussing demography, ‘cultural evolution’ is so much better to explain group differences than her abusive father, ‘Biological Evolution,’ and her damaged mother, ‘Social Evolution.’ The huge transformation of key Western societies into fissiparous, multicultural hubs fits the equation of the East-West equilibrium as a global theory: Migration is in direct reciprocity, for the greater good, a strategy of mutual cooperation and – unconsciously, but we’d rather say voluntary – the natural response to any human demographic shortcomings on this planet. Without having to care about race, by carefully only talking about culture, Western ranks are slowly but steadily being filled with the surplus of human capital produced by Eastern societies – as diverse as possible, please. It serves both hemispheres, and thus benefits the equilibrium: The analytical, deductive West increases its diversity, tendency for devolution, and multiculturalism, and is thus profiting from Eastern ‘overproduction’ of human capital that is required to keep Western culture alive, while the integration-based East increases its ethnic dominance and geopolitical reach (politicians call it “soft power”), thereby forcing ever greater levels of peace, tolerance, and harmoniousness onto the West.
Pattberg, Thorsten (2013), The East-West Dichotomy, Foreign Language Press, Beijing