Wednesday, 24 January 2018

In Praise of Eugenics.

I have been heard to say, often, that were I King I would begin my reign with a cull. It might be politically incorrect to say it out loud, but by god it’s a popular sentiment. The right-on Social Media Justice Mob will pretend to be horrified but they are not averse to wishing for or celebrating the death of their own hate figures; and given the means and opportunity to sterilise every Tory there is hardly a Labour activist in the land who wouldn’t tacitly, if not openly, endorse the sentiment.

Ben Bradley, the Conservative’s newly promoted Vice Chair for Youth, has been under fire lately for some blogs and tweets he published when he was a callow youth himself (not so long ago). He suggested that those who can’t afford children should think twice about having them. He dared to write: "Sorry but how many children you have is a choice; if you can't afford them, stop having them! Vasectomies are free," Cue the righteous outrage from the usual suspects. Eugenicist! Burn him! Jordan Peterson is dead right; it is but a short step from espousing these views to enacting them.

Today, eugenics is – like many past ideals – excoriated as an inhumanity. But it was once at the forefront of progressive thinking; the most applauded thinkers of the day dreamed of an improved human race. After all, what’s not to desire – a healthy, intelligent, long-lived, low-disease population is an indisputably high aspiration. And we still quietly do it by social means; education, encouraging family planning, discouraging those with hereditary disadvantages, emphasizing personal advancement. In short, coercion to ‘do the right thing’.

But a certain German Chancellor – among others - put paid to wholescale societal planning by trying to accelerate the process. Nowadays, those pesky human rights, which include the right to reproduce, get in the way, although I’ve never been convinced by that supposedly basic imperative; I’ve never felt the urge and I’m sure it could be controlled. If you are a walking cauldron of the genetic soup and mental capacity to breed and rear untermenschen maybe your greatest gift to the furtherance of mankind would be to voluntarily make yourself an evolutionary cul-de-sac.

Of course if you were sufficiently aware and had such a conscience, then you wouldn’t be that person anyway; it’s a tricky one, isn’t it? But the problem with trying to influence population from a top-down level will always reside with who gets to make the decision. If Momentum’s Labour Party were in power you could reasonably bet that they would pursue the chopping down of grand family trees while creating entire plantations of future Labour voters. But wouldn’t the Tories want to do much the same?

The latest crop of Labour voters, ready to harvest

It seems that state intervention is doomed to failure. Just as well we all do eugenics at an individual level, even if we call it something different. We choose our partners – what monsters we are! But anyway, the basic idea has never gone away, I don’t think it ever will. These days we try and improve the genetic stock, at least at a uni-generational level, by new forms of medical treatment; gene therapy, gene editing, etc and few people bat an eyelid. Would you like your children to be healthy and happy? Try eugenics! We’re going to need a new name.


  1. "He suggested that those who can’t afford children should think twice about having them. He dared to write: "Sorry but how many children you have is a choice; if you can't afford them, stop having them! Vasectomies are free,"

    Been saying that for yonks!

    Cut child benefit totally - and the saving would be? Introduce health insurance and the saving would be?

    It is not rocket science, but then politicians don't do common sense....

    1. Child Benefit was introduced at a time when the population was sorely depleted. It outlived its purpose decades ago. There should be ZERO reward for breeding.

  2. Is it not the case that we are not adequately replacing our population and need some help from other people? Or maybe we could help the indigents to breed better, not less? I mean I have heard of some families achieving up to twenty children all state/tax funded. Maybe we could work with what we have and state fund our indigents?

    1. I would prefer that we shrink both the economy and the population - the population to a larger degree - and economically discourage breeding by making it a bloody expensive business. 50 million would do nicely; and it they all behaved themselves, who knows where that could lead.