What I’ve noticed again and again is that northern societies, societies in northern climates tend to be wealthier than societies in southern climates.

Last year I traveled all through Europe. I was in the Ukraine. I went to Poland. I took a train down to Croatia, and then to Italy, and Denmark, and the Netherlands, and Germany. I was all over the place.

Over the years, I’ve actually traveled through South America and Asia.

For example, in northern Asia, northern China, Japan, and South Korea tend to be wealthier than Southern Asian countries like the Philippines or Thailand or Indonesia.

You have northern Europe tends to be wealthier than southern Europe, you know Germany and England, Sweden, and Denmark versus the relatively poor Italy and Greece and Spain, which those southern European countries tend to be wealthier than northern Africa like Morocco and Libya, which tend to be wealthier than central African countries.

The same holds true for the Americas. You’ve got North America. The United States and Canada tend to be a lot wealthier than Central or South America like Mexico or Brazil.

The pattern even holds true within countries, so northern Italy is more industrialized than southern Italy. The northern part of China is more rich and industrialized than the southern part of China. Generally, New England, the northern part of the United States is wealthier than the south. The list goes on and on.

Of course, there’s exceptions. I mean you’ve got like North Korea. It’s pretty far north, but there’s usually good explanations for the exceptions. I mean North Korea is under one of the tightest dictatorships on the planet. I guess it is the tightest dictatorship on the planet, and economic activity is not allowed. It’s an extremely isolated country, so there’s usually explanations for that.

Brutal Winters… More Capital?

Now the reason I think this happens is because in northern climates just to survive the winter, you have to have an enormous amount of stuff or as in economics, you would term that as capital.

For example, when I was in Thailand, a little back to the south here, I saw times mothers with their kids just living on the street in a blanket, and all they need is maybe some rice and some bananas – pretty simple food to survive because the winters there are extremely mild. I mean the winters are kind of warm, so you can survive all-year long sitting on a blanket, with a little bit of food.

Now that’s not completely possible farther north like when you are in Canada, or England, or Sweden, you would simply freeze to death. That would mean death if you do not plan ahead.

Organize… or DIE.

You would need to build a house with a good roof. You need to collect firewood to keep the fire all through the winter. You might need to build some pottery to store grain in.

You might need to have some animals, farm animals, and salt the meat so that it stays good through the winter.

You need to have more tools, building tools to build the house.

It takes a lot more capital.

It takes a lot more stuff.

If you don’t plan ahead very intensely, if you’re not thinking of the time all the time, if you’re not like obsessed with like how you’re going to survive the winter up inside your head in a focused manner, you will die.

So, I think this more like organized society, more organized focus up inside your head kind of mentality is actually a genetic adaption to northern climates in the same way that light skin is a genetic adaption because you want to capture more of that sunlight or darker skin. The sun is heating you all the time; you don’t need as much sunlight to produce like vitamin D, so you have darker skin.

Being more organized, being more punctual, it could be looked in a negative way, maybe being more neurotic and just up inside your head and less sociable and less gregarious and less fun is a genetic adaption that was necessary just to survive.

That has translated into modern societies where up in the north, people are more businesslike. People take business more seriously. There’s less tolerance for corruption.

Surviving on just $2 a day…

Whereas down in the south, I mean you can survive on a dollar a day, $2 a day. In fact, there’s a billion or 2 billion people on the planet Earth that survive on a dollar or two a day. I guarantee you none of them are living in northern countries with harsh winters. They’re all in southern countries because you can survive no problem on a dollar or two a day of rice and bananas or whatever it is. You just need a blanket maybe to sleep on, and you’re set. You’re good to go. That cannot happen in northern countries.

So because of that harsh environment, it kind of forces people in northern climates to step up economically because anybody who didn’t would die. Their genes would be weeded out of existence and they wouldn’t have children. They wouldn’t pass on their genes because they’d simply freeze to death.

What this means is that northerners I think generally tend to be more up inside their head. They’re more obsessed about punctuality. They’re more focused. May be in more modern capitalism, in some ways they’re better adapted a little bit.

Whereas southerners for example, I mean Spain has 30 percent unemployment rate.

South America, most of South America has 30 percent unemployment rate, same with South Africa, same with Southeast Asia.

There’s people living on a dollar or two a day because they can. They’re not going to die because there’s no harsh winter to deal with. But they can be more gregarious. They can be more fun.

Even though Spain has a 30 percent unemployment rate, they have great parties. You even see older people going out and partying, and dancing, and hugging and kissing. It seems more like a fun environment than up north, so there’s advantages and disadvantages to it.

Outliers always exist…

One thing I want to point out is that this is just a tendency. There are certainly people up north who are more gregarious, more outside their head, more in the moment, more wanting to party and be loud and just you know they’re not as punctual because in genetics, that can be like a peacock. You can stand out from the crowd that way, so you’re always going to have outliers in every situation.

Same thing with southern countries. You’re going to have people that are outliers, that are more inside their head, more punctual, can focus more, can plan ahead more naturally because those look like good traits when the whole population in a certain stand out and attract females that way.

You’re just always going to have outliers. Even just tendencies, you’ve got to judge every individual separately.

Again, it’s not that one is better than the other, or one is worse than the other. These are genetic adoptions to best survive in each unique environment. As far as each unique environment, it’s the most optimal way to be. It’s not like you don’t want to put value judgment on it.

Jesse, so how can this help me get GIRLS?

Another thing to consider now as we relate that back to picking up women, which is the point of this, is that let’s say that you’re a guy who is like really inside your head. You’re kind of introverted. You’re punctual. You’re focused, but almost to the point where you kind of see that it holds you back in other ways like you get nervous talking. You’re not very talkative. You kind of stay to yourself.

Well, those traits can look attractive and exotic to say women in the south who it’s just like you’re going to give up a different vibe. Instead of seeing that as nerdy, they might see that as like a good provider type or someone who just stands out from their population.

Just like having that white skin in an environment where everyone has dark skin, it’s going to make you stand out and look attractive. In the same way that a darker-skinned girl, she might stand out in the north.

So in Canada where people are kind of conservative and everything, if there’s a girl from the south, she’s more partying and fun and gregarious and more emotionally open or more physically open, those could look like very exotic, attractive traits to people in the north.

Accept yourself and others!

You always want to see how you are. You want to work with what you have. You don’t want to deny what you got. You want to work with it. It’s always going to be attractive to somebody somewhere in the population.

So I highly recommend that you travel when you get a chance. There’s all kinds of really cool cultures. Experience different ways of life and just embrace every culture that you come across and have fun with it and live in the moment and just enjoy.

P.S. share your thoughts in the comment section in the lively debate below!

22 comments

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  • You’re right that someone will always be attracted to what you have to offer. My issue is it tends to be fatter women with less pleasant personalities. I’m not the hottest or most exciting but I’m a quality man and deserve better than porkers with an attitude problem. I need help.

  • I’m surprised at the content of this post to be honest Jesse. The attraction theory about emphasizing differences is solid but the historical analysis is pure fantasy – you don’t give any historical facts whatsoever. I respect this site a lot but I honestly don’t know why you would put forward an idea that is essentially akin to Hitler’s eugenics theories that he used to justify the extermination of the Jewish race on the basis it was genetically inferior. I’m sure you don’t mean the article in this way but that’s how it comes across. Your analysis is not only scientifically and historically incorrect, it’s actually a dangerous line of thought your pursuing here.

    Your an intelligent man and yet here you’re hypothesizing that the global North has developed genetics that allow the inhabitants to forward plan and create more developed economies. The most advanced societies have been in the global North, at best, for the last 150 years, which is certainly not enough time to have evolved any different mental genetics to the rest of the world. As you have repeatedly and correctly pointed out, man has not developed genetically in thousands of years. We are genetically the same as men were 5000 years ago, if only a little taller, better fed and educated. So the science is already way off the mark. It’s complete nonsense to say that some humans have genetically adapted greater intellect and planning abilities than other groups. I have taught in the UK, Spain and France and also worked with Chinese and Indian students. In my experience there is no difference between students in the UK and Spain and if anything the Spanish students think ahead more at a younger age because they don’t have the luxury to have a strong economy to fall back on. I do agree that Latin cultures are more open socially but this is cultural and there is no ‘downside’ in terms of creating a lack of focus and intellect. Chinese and Indian students are without doubt the most focused which again negates your theory. In both cases this is due to cultural and economic factors not genetics.

    Historically speaking, as David below points out, before industrialization, typically Southern societies were more advanced. Spain for instance was the greatest European power throughout the 1500s with the most advanced economy and culture. Italy was the birthplace of the renaissance and in some respects, North Africa was more advanced than Europe including Britain and France, even up until the 1700s – they had advanced forms of geometry, mathematics, and medicine including the first forms of inoculation, while in Britain and France people were undergoing ‘treatments’ such as bleeding and leaches for illnesses. Interestingly, one could make a convincing case that the very reason that these Southern societies were able to develop earlier in history was precisely because their climate allowed them to focus on pursuing science, the arts and advanced governance while Northern countries simply focused more on basic survival.

    You make the classic error that inhabitants of dominant powers have always made over the centuries when analyzing the success of their country versus others – back-projection and the notion of inherent superiority. The analysis back-projects the current global paradigm even when the world was totally different even 200 years ago, never mind going back millennia. Your analysis also seeks to find some inherent superiority in the current pre-eminent culture. The French did it in the 1700s, the Spanish did the same in the 1500s and ancient Roman and Greek civilizations did it too. In all cases there was nothing inherent in their superiority, as history would later show, it was a product of circumstance and opportunity.

    If there is an explanation as to the current strength of the global North it may well lie in the adoption of a certain mythology around success and work-ethic as well as the adoption of a debt and productivity based economy. However you could just as easily point to the way that the US and UK have plundered the global South through colonization and monopoly of global resources.

    Seriously Jesse, sort it out. I know your not a maniac eugenicist.

    • You protest, “It’s complete nonsense to say that some humans have genetically adapted greater intellect and planning abilities than other groups.”

      Well, we’ve adapted different skin color and different height to specific environments. Some have adapted to digesting cow’s milk based on climate. Europeans are more adapted to surviving Bubonic plague.

      So all over the Earth, across all human populations, you’re saying that there are NO difference and NO adaption? THAT is just fantasy.

      I’m not saying in the video that some groups are more intelligent or less intelligent than others. I’m saying that a native Northerner is better adapted to sitting indoors all day (an adaption to long winters) and sitting at a desk and focus on something inside his head. Hell, Northerners could be STUPIDER than Southerners. BUT because of adaptions to cold environments, it makes them better adapted to what modern capitalism demands, which is to sit all day and put you nose into a school book.

      Yeah, the south (1500s Span, Ancient Rome, Ancient Egypt) were all more advanced than the North… but that’s because those were agrarian societies, where an agrarian economy was king. Northerners had to barely scrape by to survive the harsh winters, while the Southerners kicked butt.

      The environment has changed though– more capitalism and being wealthy demands lots of schooling and sitting and focusing and planning… NOT being outdoors farming the land. Northerners have better temperaments or more stamina for that, even though Northerners could very well be less intelligent overall.

      • I have to disagree with you here Jesse. Adaptations like change in skin colour and tolerance for certain foods and chemicals took hundreds of generations to emerge and there are very clear reasons for their development and well-defined genomes that relate to them. The kind of adaptation you’re talking about – the ability to future plan and spend time indoors is demonstrated by many people across virtually every culture and in every part of the world. The ability to sit indoors and forward plan is not an ability that is solely possessed by Northern Europeans and that certainly doesn’t explain the wealth differential across the world.

        Furthermore, if you actually look at the lifestyle of people living in England and Northern Europe, the male basically did spend most of the year outside working the land anyway. The forward planning they had to do throughout the year was not much different to the forward planning that was done in warmer climates as it was still essentially seasonal. I sincerely doubt that they passed on any genetic capacity related to cognition and planning that was vastly different from any other society. Also, people historically lived in small communities and traditions were passed down from generation to generation so your ability to survive did not depend on your ability to reason and figure everything out alone.

        Neither society had many commonalities with the current one in terms of the work that most people did. In any case it seems that both people from the global North and South can easily be socialized and educated into the types of work that are more prevalent in the current economies. There are plenty of people in India doing Europe and the USA’s outsourcing work in fields such as programming and IT support. There are plenty of people in South America working in call centers. They sit in offices all day doing literally the same work as people in Europe and the USA for much lower pay. Do they too possess the office gene? If so, where did it come from and why are they still poor?

        To associate global poverty with genetics is one of the wildest explanations for differences in wealth you could hear. What’s more though it also has strong parallels social Darwinism, an ugly perversion of Darwin’s hypothesis and observations that is easily manipulated to justify just about any type of abuse, exploitation, extermination policy or social inequality.

        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Social_Darwinism

        This line of thinking that eventually led to the eugenics program in Germany and has been used to justify any number of other backwards and exploitative social policies. Global poverty is a profound question that economists, historians and people working in development have many answers to as there are a number of determining factors. Typically the main explanations to the phenomena of poverty in the global South relate to things like political instability, high-levels of corruption, lack of infrastructure and education, debt, monopolization of key industries and resources by foreign corporations and in many cases the simple fact of having been subjected to ruthless imperialist exploitation by colonial powers such as Britain, France, Spain, Holland and Italy and the USA in the second half of the 20th century.

        It’s phenomena like this that explain why girls (and boys) in the global South are poorer. Genetics just does not come into play, not least because the time-frame is just too short for it to do so. In addition, as David below says, wealthy countries such as the USA, Britain and Holland are ethnically incredibly diverse with populations who have genetics tracing back to both the global South and North. That fact alone dismantles the notion that there is some office working gene or forward planning gene that Northerners inherently possess due to their history.

        Again, just to emphasize, I really respect your work and it has helped me a lot over the years, hence me taking the time to bother writing a response to this. I honestly think if you take a look into the issues relating to the poverty in the global South with an open mind you will see a lot of tremendous issues and none of them will relate to genetics.

    • @ Joseph: Thanks for the answer…

      I didn’t say that southerners can’t future plan—only that Northerners have better *stamina* for indoor and ‘up in their heads activities, which is better suited to what modern capitalism is looking for. I’m open to it being a different adaptive trait than that, that has to do with cold and long indoor winters, but it would be something similar.

      You say, “The forward planning they had to do throughout the year was not much different to the forward planning that was done in warmer climates as it was still essentially seasonal.”

      The farther North you go, the harsher the climate gets and the more capital you need accumulated to get through tough winters. That’s just a fact.

      You say, “To associate global poverty with genetics is one of the wildest explanations for differences in wealth you could hear. What’s more though it also has strong parallels social Darwinism,”

      Look, I’m not saying there’s inferiority here, just adaptive differences. Men and women are biologically different in their brain chemistry, that doesn’t mean that men are superior and should rule over women with an iron fist.

      To clarify, Northerners are not superior, I made this pretty clear in the video. I’m saying they have subtle adaptive traits to the cold and long winters (molded over tens of thousands of generations) that, by pure dumb chance, jive well with the demands of modern capitalism in creating capital and wealth.

      You say, “in many cases the simple fact of having been subjected to ruthless imperialist exploitation by colonial powers such as Britain, France, Spain,”

      Imperialism is part of the answer, but not the whole answer. For example, China threw off their imperialist masters in 1949, and has surged forward since. Yet in the south- Africa and Central America- they threw off the imperial yoke as well, and they’re still economic basket cases.

      Why is Northern Italy more industrialized than the hotter climate Southern Italy? Was Southern Italy under the yoke of imperialism, while the North wasn’t? No. There are plenty of cases where the South is poorer, and imperialism didn’t play a factor.

      You say, “Genetics just does not come into play, not least because the time-frame is just too short for it to do so.”

      Man populated the Northern climates tens of thousands of years ago… you’ve got 30,000 generations or so of genetic isolation and adaption. That IS plenty of time, and subtle difference DO emerge like skin color adaption, digestion, and immunity to diseases. Why is it so wild to state that there may small and subtle differences in brain chemistry as well?

      Maybe if people looked into what the very subtle differences between populations (due to genetic isolation in different environments) more closely – instead of pretending like evolutionary adaptive differences don’t exist – it could actually help the south pull out of poverty.

      • The problem is there is no evidence suggesting that the ability to work in an office is genetic or racial. The fact that most cultures have a lot of office workers, even poorer ones, would suggest that it’s not.

        You might find Gladwell’s book, ‘Outliers’ an interesting follow up to this. He looks at individuals and communities that excel in certain ways. There’s also a ton of good writers who have looked at issues relating to global poverty – I’d honestly be surprised if you were to maintain that genetics is a determining factor after looking at global development in more detail.

      • Joseph, you say, “The problem is there is no evidence suggesting that the ability to work in an office is genetic or racial. The fact that most cultures have a lot of office workers, even poorer ones, would suggest that it’s not.”

        My answer: It’s not that southerners can’t work long hours in office buildings (often companies run by Northerners by the way, like call centers)… it’s more subtle than that. It’s that the society as a whole is dysfunctional compared to Northern societies. I’ve traveled all over the world and just seen this pattern, again, and again… and again.

        There’s a good book called “Guns, Germs and Steel”, and a Netflix documentary about it too– Go watch it!! It makes a strong case why the industrial revolution arose in Europe first and not anywhere else- and why conquest of the 1500s through 1700s had nothing to do with race. I agree completely.

        But arguments put forth by “Guns, Germans, and Steel” fail to explain a lot of what we see in the 20th and 21st centuries.

        I am all for changing my tune and my opinion, if someone can throw real, concrete counterexamples at me of where a Southern society is really booming compared to their Northern neighbors. I can think of one– the tiny country of Singapore perhaps. Where else ???

      • You still haven’t stated what this mysterious ability is. You said it’s not intelligence, but some sort of “up in head/planning” ability. Evidence was provided that call centers are typically in Southern, poorer countries, which you didn’t rebut, but just said Southern societies are more dysfunctional. You first must provide an detailed definition of this mysterious ability (ability to plan, ability to think, stamina to read, etc.). Part of creating a scientific hypothesis is providing an operational definition. From what I can discern, you seem to be stating that people in Southern climates are riddled with an epidemic of ADHD. After you define it, you must test it, controlling for external factors. You need to come up with a valid and reliable test to measure this mysterious ability. You must then demonstrate that people that evolved from northern climates have this ability, while people with southern climates don’t, while controlling for factors such as poverty, access to education, access to healthcare, religion, etc. I’m sure there has been plenty of such research done already, so you don’t have to start from scratch.

        Rather then putting forth hypotheses with no real evidence, why don’t you do a scholarly literature review and write a paper? You’re not the first person to ask this question. Scientists devote their entire careers with extensive research on this without coming up with a solid answer, while you are stating you have solved the problem with a thought experiment and presumably are ready to incorporate it into your curriculum. Nobody on this page seems to agree with you, and your readers that evolved historically in Southern climates will likely be insulted by it. I grew up in Mississippi, the most poverty-stricken and educationally deficient state in the Union, and tests state I am far more intelligent and possess more of this planning ability than the vast majority of my Northern peers. I was raised in an environment that encouraged learning and demanded success. Our class valedictorian, whose parents were from India, a Southern climate, was even smarter than me.

        You still haven’t explained why most of civilization’s advances occurred in Southern climates if they don’t possess a planning ability that Northerner’s have. Reading, writing, philosophy, engineering, and math were all developed in the South. Why didn’t those sitting around in their huts with their superior abilities develop these things?

      • Thanks for the reply Anonymous, but you’re overreacting a bit.

        You say, “You still haven’t stated what this mysterious ability is. You said it’s not intelligence, but some sort of “up in head/planning” ability.”

        >> Yes, I’m not exactly sure what it is, just saying there’s a different brain chemistry related to thriving in very cold indoor environments versus thriving in hotter outdoor environments.

        You say, “Evidence was provided that call centers are typically in Southern, poorer countries, which you didn’t rebut, but just said Southern societies are more dysfunctional.”

        >> I addressed this in one of the comments

        You say, “You first must provide an detailed definition of this mysterious ability (ability to plan, ability to think, stamina to read, etc.). Part of creating a scientific hypothesis is providing an operational definition.”

        >> This isn’t my personal musings alone—this is a hypothesis put forward by many others. I think it makes sense, personally.

        You say, “From what I can discern, you seem to be stating that people in Southern climates are riddled with an epidemic of ADHD. After you define it, you must test it, controlling for external factors. You need to come up with a valid and reliable test to measure this mysterious ability. You must then demonstrate that people that evolved from northern climates have this ability, while people with southern climates don’t, while controlling for factors such as poverty, access to education, access to healthcare, religion, etc. I’m sure there has been plenty of such research done already, so you don’t have to start from scratch.”

        >> I agree—I don’t have time for that as I teach pickup, it needs to be explored more by researchers. Right now it’s too taboo to say there’s ANY differences whatsoever, so you don’t see much research exploring it.

        You say, “Rather then putting forth hypotheses with no real evidence, why don’t you do a scholarly literature review and write a paper?”

        >> Everyone has beliefs that they espouse through personal observation, without writing scholarly research papers on it. Most people are religious, but don’t write a long thesis to back it up—most people don’t write scholarly papers about global warming without stating a yea or nay opinion on it.

        I speak simply from extensive travel experience—seeing the same pattern again, and again, and again… and AGAIN.

        The hypnosis I put forward is very simple and straightforward. 30,000 years ago groups of humans separated and developed different subtle traits to adapt to different climates and food sources. You can see this outwardly in skin color, eye shape, and so on. It also affected our immune systems and what diseases we’re most susceptible to.

        It also affected our brains. In subtle ways. Groups of people who adapted to colder indoor environments just function in modern capitalism in such a way as to be more organized and with more capital, and wealthier.

        There are billions of people that live on less than $2 a day… and 99% of them are in southern climates. Why? Because the cold winter weather would kill you off with that little amount of capital in the North. The cold winter kills, and selects for particular traits over generations, and quite quickly too.

        Is that so, so radical of a statement?

        Look I hate poverty, it’s a shame… so let’s stop putting our heads in the sand about where the majority of poverty is, and explore ALL the contributing factors as a means to alleviate it.

        You say, “Nobody on this page seems to agree with you,”

        >>> Well… 3 people so far have pushed back against the idea (and the page has thousands of views). And none of you 3 have given much of a counterargument, except that past Imperialism is a factor (which I don’t disagree with it being a factor—although I believe it’s just one factor among many factors).

        You say, “You still haven’t explained why most of civilization’s advances occurred in Southern climates if they don’t possess a planning ability that Northerner’s have. Reading, writing, philosophy, engineering, and math were all developed in the South. Why didn’t those sitting around in their huts with their superior abilities develop these things?”

        >>> I answered that in a comment. In an agrarian economy, the south had the advantage— Northerners were barely scraping out survival in the harsher colder climate, whereas civilization flourished in the more agreeable South. But now, in modern capitalism, that extreme need to “be prepared for winter” by Northerners makes them better at organizing under capitalism—and the South is left behind in comparison.

      • People have been studying racial differences in mental ability for a long time. In the early 1900’s, it was scientific opinion that the Irish, the Polish, the Russians, and the Italians were mentally inferior to other Europeans. That has proven to be hogwash. There are plenty of people putting forth such hypotheses, but there is no scientific evidence to back them up. What you put forth is a hypothesis, but one with no scientific evidence to support it. It MIGHT be true, but there are a lot of things that might be true but aren’t. It seems highly improbable to me. You keep emphasizing that you have SEEN wealth disparities between people in northern and southern climates. You don’t need to, because that statement is accepted as fact. No one is arguing with you there. If you want your hypothesis taken seriously (which no one within the scientific community does), provide evidence. The burden of proof lies with you. Since you have provided no evidence, your hypothesis should be dismissed. I hope you don’t start teaching it as fact.

      • David, I stand by my arguments and here’s why:

        This is essentially a “nature vs nurture” argument at its core, and there is PLENTY of hard scientific evidence that human behavior is typically a combination of *both* nurture AND nature.

        You say, “If you want your hypothesis taken seriously (which no one within the scientific community does)”

        >>> Hold on a second, this field of inquiry does not fall under “hard science” or “the scientific community” as you wrongly suggest. You have intellectuals who form opinions, but these are ultimately opinions that are NOT backed up with “experiments”. It is what’s called a “soft science”, in the same way that psychology is somewhat open to opinions and interpretation. It’s not take measuring the number of electrons and in an atom and getting a “hard” fixed answer.

        You also say, “provide evidence”

        >>> 1) observational evidence- 99% of the very poor are in the south, this is accepted as fact and you don’t disagree with me on that point.
        2) All *hard* scientific research points to nature being a contributing factor in human behavior and differences.
        3) The scientific laws of Evolution… separate and isolate populations for tens of thousands of years and you WILL get subtle differences.

        That is still not a “closed case” though, more research needs to be done, but I think there’s enough “where there’s smoke, there’s probably fire” here that it deserves further inquiry.

      • I have a master’s degree in clinical psychology, so I understand how psychology works. Soft science or hard science, psychology is still “science.” You haven’t said anything that is part of science. You proposed a hypothesis and then stopped there.

        “You have intellectuals who form opinions, but these are ultimately opinions that are NOT backed up with “experiments”.”

        You are demonstrating your complete ignorance of psychology. Psychologists do experiments all the time. Psychology is not made up of “opinions.” Opinions are like assholes, everyone has one. Have you ever even glanced at a psychological journal? I was doing psychological experiments when I was 20. Psychologists do initially come up with opinions, but then they test them with experiments, just as any practitioner of a “hard science” does. That is what “science” is about. Your idea is easily testable (though likely extremely difficult to prove). You would first define what this mysterious ability is. You would then separate people into ethnic groups. You would come up with some sort of test to differentiate people based on this ability. The test would have to be tested over years to establish both its validity (that it actually is testing for aptitude in the ability) and reliability (that it continuously tests for this ability over time). You would then need to demonstrate that ethnic groups differ in this ability. Then would come the hardest part, you would have to make sure you controlled for external factors. Even if such differences existed, you would have to prove that they actually existed due to some genetic adaptation and not an external factor such as access to education, access to healthcare, culture, religion, health, etc. You would have to have very strong evidence because the scientific community would tear you to pieces, as practitioners of eugenics relied on such opinions in the past, and such ideology led to the Holocaust and other detestable policies in the early 20th century. I doubt that you are going to do any of the gruntwork to prove your hypothesis, or even do a basic literature review to provide support for it, so why even propose such a controversial idea? Leave the psychology to the psychologists.

      • Hey David, the issue at hand falls under socioeconomics, not psychology, and there’s a reason economists call their field the “dismal science”- precisely because it’s not possible to run controlled experiments that control for all the factors like you’re suggesting.

        You say, “Then would come the hardest part, you would have to make sure you controlled for external factors.”

        By your strict standards, then theories of imperialism being the cause of persistent poverty are equally irrelevant and hokum because it’s not testable or provable where one can control for all the potential factors. There’s no way you can isolate the “19th century imperialism factor” in controlled, repeatable tests, so that theory remains contentious to varying degrees, usually depending if you lean right or left.

        “Germs, guns, and steel” is a great scholarly work of why Europe conquered the world in the 1500s through 1800s due to rather chance factors, but ultimately it’s just the dude’s opinion, and it’s not nowhere testable to the level you’re demanding.

        You say, “as practitioners of eugenics relied on such opinions in the past, and such ideology led to the Holocaust and other detestable policies in the early 20th century”

        That’s kind of like saying, “There’s no genetic differences between men and women, and if you believe there are, that’s the mentality that leads to rape and violence and against women.”

        Or it’s like saying, “Universal Health Care is socialist, which is the path that leads to Communism, which leads to Stalin, which leads to millions of people dying in the Gulag. Therefore, I’m against Obamacare in the U.S.”

        That you keep bringing up Nazis suggests to me that you cloak yourself in the mantle science when you’re really driven by your emotions, instead of being open minded.

        Also, as I’ve already mentioned, I *don’t* suspect the difference is raw intelligence. If you gave IQ tests and equal schooling to everyone, I’m sure a typical Southerner could trounce a typical Northerner.

        So please stop obliquely suggesting I’m into “Eugenics” to create a master race. That’s a shaming argument meant to shut down the discusson, like when people label a girl who wants to talk about sex “a slut”.

        By the way, I appreciate the discussion, and you’ve made your points. We’re not going to convince each other on this, and that’s fine.

      • I’m not a sociologist or an economist, so I don’t know what effects imperialism has had on societies, or how such theories are proven or tested. You are proposing a clear psychological theory though, that people from northern climates possess some psychological ability that people from southern climates don’t have. Psychologists test similar theories all the time, and to be taken seriously in the scientific community, they have to test them and provide evidence. They don’t get to propose hypotheses and have them published without doing any work. Comparing your hypothesis to some economic theory that I am not familiar with is a false comparison, because you are not proposing an economic theory, you are proposing a psychological one, a scientific one. As far as I understand, economics is not a science. Psychology is. The scientific method is necessary. Before proposing hypotheses, psychologists are required to research past psychological papers and experiments in order to obtain a justification for their hypothesis. They are then required to test them. You proposed a hypothesis, one step in the scientific method, but have taken no other steps, and given that you aren’t a psychologist or scientist, are not likely to take any other steps, and have indicated you have a very poor understanding of what psychology even is, your psychological hypothesis should be dismissed, controversial or not.

  • It’s me again. Just off the top of my head, a better explanation based on climate on why this dichotomy has developed in modern times is that Northern cultures have been historically more industrial based while Southern cultures have been more agriculturally based. Riches in southern climates were amassed from agriculture, with the populace developing skills to work in the fields. Because northern climates are not suited to agriculture, people in northern climates turned to industry to amass wealth. They had to develop more skills to do so, and over time, industry became more profitable than agriculture, providing the populace with more resources and better education. This is why the Northern US is generally better off than the Southern US. A large percentage of the South is composed of the descendants of slaves who have historically been denied the opportunities and education that the rest of the country has.

  • Your theory is flawed and racist. You’re stating races in Northern climates are genetically superior (more intelligent) than people in the Southern climates. I doubt it has anything to do with genetics. Their cultures though may have adapted to be more industrious.

    Some flaws with the genetic theory:
    There are plenty of highly intelligent people in countries in Southern climates, especially Southern Europe and India (which is very hot).

    Civilization was developed in warm, not cold climates, a short time ago in the history of human evolution. Civilization developed in Egypt, Mesopotamia, and India, very warm climates. Writing was invented in these climates as well.

    The Americas is an insanely inappropriate example if you are basing your hypothesis on genetics. The residents of the Americas did not evolve in the Americas. If you were using the Americas as an example, you would argue that northern Native Americans were more developed than southern Native Americans, but that’s a false statement. The Native Americans in the Southern Americas were much more advanced than their kindred in the north.

    Northern Europe is more advanced now, but not historically. Did you forget about the Greek and Roman Empires? Northern Europe was relatively uncivilized and filled with brutish “barbarians” during this period. Northern Europeans have not evolved to be more intelligent in the past 2,000 years.

    • I’m not saying that Northerners are more intelligent. I’m saying they have more stamina to say, sit down in a highly focused way reading a book for hours and hours on end. It’s a different kind of skill. Who knows, maybe they’re LESS intelligent overall. But they end up being better planners in adulthood. Subtle, but very important difference there from “more or less intelligent”.

      As for 5,000 years ago, yes culture was more developed in southern climates, say in Rome and Egypt. In the far North, people were under harsher conditions, and it was more about barely surviving rather than building a complex Civilization. But these complex Civilizations were all agrarian.

      Now that modern industry is based indoors and has more to do with lots of sitting indoors and studying and planning and education, Northerners now have the advantage, because by chance it happens to fit well their genetic tendencies of an indoor (and out of the bitter cold) lifestyle.

  • Really good point. You can even make an argument to say that light skinned women are more attractive than dark skinned women because they live in the north and living in the north means that you are wealty or have money. Who doesnt like a women with status and money ?